Transformations to Sustainability is a Belmont Forum-NORFACE Joint Research Programme

In the June 2020 edition: Against the backdrop of an unprecedented, hugely disruptive global pandemic, we highlight responses from the T2S community that suggest new transformative pathways out of the crisis.

Elvert Barnes Photography
Under the exceptional circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the midterm workshop of the T2S programme in June 2020 was turned into a virtual event. Nevertheless, the workshop focus selected by project members 8 months previously – the politics of engaged transformative research – was, under the circumstances, even more relevant and timely.

You can find presentations from the projects and view the discussions that went on during the workshop on our website.

All best wishes from the T2S Secretariat team
T2S Transfomations talks webinars

UNMAKING in transformations to sustainability: Q&A with Giuseppe Feola

On the sidelines of the virtual workshop, we caught up with Giuseppe Feola, who's leading UNMAKING, a research programme on the disruption of capitalism in societal transformation to sustainability, for a discussion on how processes of deconstruction go hand-in-hand with the construction of sustainable alternatives. Read more on our blog.

Transformations to Sustainability and COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting all members of the Transformations to Sustainability community and posing new questions about how we understand social transformations.

The network has responded actively, sharing little-reported stories of how rural communities around the world are responding, thought-provoking articles about pitfalls and opportunities resulting from the crisis, and new ideas and suggestions for lessons we can learn from this exceptional period.

Find the latest pieces here.

More blogs and opinion from the T2S community:


Co-labouring for Sustainability: the value of transdisciplinary collaboration between mining actors, artists and researchers

In this short blog, Robert Pijpers and Sabine Luning reflect on the Gold Matters project ‘Sustainability Conversations Workshop’ that look place in Kejetia, Northern Ghana, earlier this year. The workshop focused on transdisciplinary collaborations around visualisations of gold mining spaces, gold miners’ lifeways and projections of sustainable futures.

Read more

Resources round-up: latest publications from the T2S community

Articles, book chapters, media coverage and more from the T2S programme projects and related research...

Read more

Reading recommendations from our network

Addressing societal challenges using transdisciplinary research
This OECD report looks at how transdisciplinary research can be used to address complex societal challenges. This includes developing effective responses in acute crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as longer-term solutions for sustainability development. In a series of 28 case studies, each of which is briefly summarised in the report, it identifies the key obstacles to effectively implementing transdisciplinary research. Many of these are embedded in the way that research systems are structured and managed and they are amenable to policy intervention. Examples of how various actors, including funding agencies and universities, are adapting to better accommodate the requirements of transdisciplinary research are included in the report and related policy actions are ascribed for these actors.

How can COVID-19 be the catalyst to decolonise development research?
The global pandemic offers us an opportunity to reflect on what has not been working in development research, and to find new solutions to build a reciprocal relationship and to produce research knowledge that is respectful, honouring, and authentic of the Global South, say Melanie Pinet and Carmen Leon-Himmelstine in this short blog.

Funding calls and other opportunities:

Towards Sustainability of Soils and Groundwater for Society

The Belmont Forum has launched a collaborative research call on the theme: Towards Sustainability of Soils and Groundwater for Society.

Key dates:

- Call Opens: 09 April 2020
- Registration Open: 09 April 2020
- Registration Closes: 23 July 2020, 13:59 UTC
- Proposals Open: on submission of registration
- Proposals Close: 24 August 2020, 13:59 UTC

Find out more.

Call for indigenous and local knowledge to develop new biodiversity assessments

The Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) is inviting indigenous peoples and local communities from all over the world to support three ongoing IPBES assessments:

- The assessment of the sustainable use of wild species
- The assessment on diverse conceptualisations of multiple values of nature
- The assessment of invasive alien species

Deadline for nominations: 10 July 2020

Find out more

Call for nominations: Membership of the Joint Scientific Committee of the World Climate Research Programme

The World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) is calling for nominations for mid- to senior-career researchers from around the globe, from the social and economical sciences, for membership of the WCRP Joint Scientific Committee (JSC) for a four-year term from 1 January 2021 – 31 December 2024. Self-nominations are accepted.

Deadline: 15 July 2020

Find out more

Falling Walls 2020: call for nominations for breakthroughs of the year

The 2020 Falling Walls conference will be a digital event, and has been completely redesigned to make the most out of remote meetings. Falling Walls will shift from a series of meetings and one conference with a limited number of speakers and topics to a global showcase that gathers, discusses, and celebrates a much broader set of the most recent breakthroughs in science and society – the Falling Walls Breakthroughs of the Year.

To highlight breakthrough thinking from all over the world, nominations are requested for the most recent breakthroughs in ten categories, from life sciences to science management.

The nominations period will run to 1 September.

Find out more

Connect with the T2S Community

POLLEN 2020 Virtual Meeting: Power, Possibility, Prefiguration
The Third Biennial Conference of the Political Ecology Network (POLLEN) on Contested Natures: Power, Possibility, Prefiguration has moved online, and will now take place on 22-25 September 2020.

Now that new dates have been set, all session organizers and presenters in organized sessions that have been accepted are asked to re-connect with the conference organizers by 30 June. Once this has happened, a call for individual submissions and non-presenter registration will be announced.

Find out more on the POLLEN website.

Transformations 2021: Enabling Positive Tipping Points
8-10 September 2021
Barcelona, Spain

SAVE THE DATE for the next edition of the Transformations International Conference Series and Community of Practice. The theme is Enabling Positive Tipping Points and the conference will focus on the following questions:
  • Why at one or several points in time do societies, organizations and individuals flip into fundamentally different development or behaviour trajectories and embrace sustainability-oriented transformations?
  • Who are the ‘transformers’ and which positive effects do they have in their own contexts of action?
  • Which kind of global transformative capacities are needed to create the world(s) we want to live in?
A website for the conference will be launched in April 2021.

Sustainability Research & Innovation 2020 POSTPONED TO 2021
Exact date TBC - mid-2021
Brisbane, Australia

See our website for all forthcoming events.
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