CONFERENCE THEMES AND FORMATS

CONFERENCE THEMES AND FORMATS

 

Themes

 

The Final Event focuses on the following three themes; Disruptive and creative methods, Engaging people, and Ethical doings.

 

1. Disruptive and creative methods  

 

The aim is to discuss possibilities and gaps in methodological approaches to place-shaping practices. Researchers and practitioners may present unconventional ways of doing research and demonstrate the empirical findings from their experience. Particular attention will be given to participatory methodologies, artistic and creative methods, visual techniques, transpersonal research approaches and transdisciplinary encounters. We will address the following questions:   

 

  • Which innovative, unconventional methods are being experimented with and used in place-based contexts to disrupt the established perceptions/norms?
  • How can existing methods be applied in an innovative and place-sensitive ways?
  • What knowledge gaps can these methods fill?
  • To what extent do they capture and foster disruptive science and policy that enhance transformations?
  • Are existing theories and policies adequate to support and inspire such methods?

 

2. Engaging people

 

The focus here is on new avenues as well as strengths and weaknesses in implementing participatory approaches. This entails the engagement of different target groups, with diverse needs, intentions, values and aspirations, e.g. communities, policy-makers, change agents, marginalized groups. We will explore the following questions:

 

  • How to effectively engage people in place-based research?
  • What target groups should be involved and how?
  • How can marginalized voices be represented?
  • What ethical questions are guiding these choices?
  • How can citizens become active participants in the co-production of science and co-creation of solutions?

 

3. Ethical doings

 

A commitment to sustainability in places often requires wearing many “hats”. Regardless of the formal role – be it researcher, policy-maker, activist, practitioner etc. – professionals working for sustainability need to take on multiple roles to facilitate changes in the realities they are embedded in. This requires adaptability and a capacity to deal with uncertainty and with value-laden decision-making processes. In this theme, we will discuss the ethical horizons and the multifaceted roles of sustainability professionals as analysts, facilitators, mediators, knowledge-brokers, change agents, deliberators, humans etc. and ask:

 

  • What challenges and opportunities do sustainability professionals encounter when taking on different roles and “hats”?
  • What skills and capacities are needed to bring forward transformative change in different places?
  • How does place-based work affect professionals’ positionality and reflexivity?
  • What normative orientations and ethical underpinnings should motivate their doings?

 

 

Format of the sessions

 

We welcome contributions in a variety of formats, following the three themes of the Conference: Disruptive Methods, Engaging People, Ethical Doings.

 

  • INTERACTIVE PARALLEL SESSIONS: these sessions will provide the space for researchers to present their work. The presentations will last maximum 15 minutes and will be followed by an interactive discussion. These sessions will be moderated using different formats, such as Pecha Kucha, walking, World Cafe’ etc.

 

  • PRACTICE SESSIONS: open for submissions for practical, hands-on laboratories and workshops where you can demonstrate or test your methods or practice. We welcome a variety of formats, for example involving serious games, role play, art-based techniques, design thinking, storytelling workshops, etc. You will have a 1,5 hours time slot, which you can use as you wish.

 

  • DILEMMA SESSIONS: proponents can submit a “dilemma”, a burning question they might be facing in their work, with the intent of gathering the collective intelligence of participants. You will have 1,5 hours, and you will be given support in organizing the session (a detailed set of instructions, or a facilitator upon request).

 

  • "OPEN STAGE" EXHIBITION: a space to display posters, infromation materials but also demonstrate unconventional forms of research and practice, including storytelling, participatory video-making etc.