Meeting Day Details

MeetingDate and Time
Working Group on Democracy and Earth System Governance Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 10:00 CEST
Working Group on Asia-Pacific Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 10:00 CEST
Urban Working Group Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 10:00 CEST
Taskforce on New Technologies Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 13:00 CEST
Taskforce on Anticipatory Governance Friday, 10 September 2021
10.00 – 13:00 CEST
Taskforce on Sustainable Development Goals Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST
Taskforce on Knowledge Cumulation Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 15:30 CEST
Taskforce on Governance for Nature and Biodiversity Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST
Taskforce on Ocean Governance Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST
Taskforce on Planetary Justice Friday, 10 September 2021
15:00 – 1:00 CEST
Taskforce on Earth System Law Friday, 10 September 2021
8.30-10.00 CEST
16:00 – 18:00 CEST

Working Group on Democracy and Earth System Governance

Conveners: Thomas Hickmann, Jonathan Pickering and Karin Bäckstrand

Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 10:00 CEST

The working group on democracy and earth system governance brings together researchers from various academic disciplines who are interested in how questions of democracy, power and legitimacy bear on the challenges of governing contemporary social-ecological risks. We are particularly keen to explore the tensions and synergies between democratic and environmental values at local, national and global levels. We plan to hold a half-day workshop meeting to exchange updates on new work and plan further collaborations. We will take stock of plans discussed at last year’s meeting (including a webinar and policy brief) and initiate a discussion on how the work of the group relates to diversity, which is one of the four contextual conditions of the Earth System Governance Project’s Science and Implementation Plan. Democratic processes can enhance diversity in decision-making, particularly by enabling the voices of marginalised groups and minorities to be heard. Yet, while democracy itself is a highly diverse set of practices, existing democratic societies generally fall far short when it comes to recognizing diverse understandings of social-ecological relationships and fostering meaningful deliberation across divergent perspectives on environmental concerns. The meeting will be open to any interested conference participants and will be facilitated by the working group co-convenors Karin Bäckstrand, Thomas Hickmann and Jonathan Pickering.

Working Group on Asia-Pacific

Conveners: Annisa Triyanti, Paul Harris

Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 10:00 CEST

In February 2021, 7 members affiliated with 7 different institutions from the Netherlands, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Indonesia gathered and agreed to form the ESG Asia-Pacific Working Group and further develop its structure and focus. The working group seeks to initiate collective and collaborative dialogue and discussion among scholars who are interested in adding regional perspectives and insights of and from the Asia-Pacific region into Earth System Governance research, by reflecting on their research and experience in different fields and disciplines and applying the Earth System Governance analytical framework to socio-ecological challenges within the Asia-Pacific region. This initiative is timely and urgent, not only because of the rapid socio-economic development and dynamics, widening inequality and injustice, and accelerating rate of environmental changes including climate- and disaster-related risks in the Asia-Pacific region, but also due to the increasing scholarly engagement with new ideas and research innovations produced by scholars in the region to analyse and evaluate the governance of the current and future socio-environmental problems.

This meeting aims to introduce the ESG Asia-Pacific initiative to the ESG network community and beyond, and share the varieties of work of its current members. By doing this, we would like to invite wider scholars within and beyond the ESG network, who are interested in the Earth System Governance field in the Asia Pacific, to share their ideas and interest in terms of important research and future collaboration  relevant to the Asia Pacific region. Eventually, we would like to invite the participants to join the Working Group and participate in the activities together and foster future collaboration in the longer term.

The format would be a combination of plenary and breakout group discussion. After the opening session, we will have a 3 minutes pitch presentation from current members on their research and implication to ESG in the Asia Pacific. The breakout sessions will discuss a common topic – climate risk, disaster risk governance, and sustainability – employing different research lenses. The breakout group discussion will be followed by a plenary session to discuss the results from the group discussions. After that, we will open a feedback session to collect more insights about the current focus, or to introduce new potential topics for the ESG Asia-Pacific. This meeting will conclude with suggested topics and research questions to foster future collaborations.

Urban Working Group

Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 10:00 CEST

Conveners: Linda Westman, Rachel Macrorie, Marielle Papin

Building on the ESG Urban Working Group’s inaugural meeting at the 2020 ESG Virtual Forum, the objectives of this session are to: (1) explore themes that emerge from contradictions in the urban governance scholarship; (2) hold a strategic discussion on plans for the Working Group this coming year.  The first half of the meeting is open to all scholars and practitioners with a self-defined urban interest. The aim is to stimulate debate around topics that raise tensions in research on urban environmental governance and socio-technical change. Our entry point is that cities and urban areas are recognised as critical to addressing the global imperative of sustainability transformations. Despite growing consensus around this discourse, the reality of realizing deep societal change is replete with contradictions. We hope to explore and debate some of the main conflicts, contestations, and paradoxes that arise in our research, as a strategy to challenge and move beyond current paradigms. The discussion will be conducted according to a roundtable format, introduced through a set of interventions, and including opportunities for breakout discussions.

Points for discussion could include, but are not limited to how:

a) There is agreement on the urgent need for urban transformations, but little evidence of profound or radical change in practice. Some solutions advocated through the discourse may lead to reproduction of dominant development logics or even counterproductive initiatives.

b) In a post-pandemic world, ‘green’ recovery packages are being promoted as solutions to both economic recession and environmental crises. Will such programs enable environmental sustainability in cities, or herald a new era of neoliberal investment?

c) As urban governance scholars, we often advocate inclusive, collaborative approaches. How will this be possible in an era of post-pandemic isolation, political polarization, and the rise of nationalist ideologies?

d) Disruptive innovation is often presented as a solution to environmental deterioration in cities as well as a means to generate employment. What are the roles of high-tech investment, and is it compatible with traditional knowledge, repair, and maintenance practices?

f) There is a strong interest in nexus approaches, coordinated and integrated management, and holistic urban planning. Does this detract from focused action and sector-based interventions that work in practice?

The second half of the meeting is open to current and prospective members of the ESG Urban Working group. We will provide an update on activities and progress of the Working Group achieved over the past year and hold a structured discussion around opportunities and plans for collaboration moving forward.

Taskforce on New Technologies

Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 13:00 CEST

Conveners: Florian Rabitz and Eduardo Viola

Officially launched in 2019, the ESG Taskforce on New Technologies facilitates communication, cooperation, and collaboration among scholars of environmental governance and regulating emerging technologies. It also raises the profiles of technologies in environmental governance scholarship, as well as that of environmental governance in the scholarship of regulating emerging technologies. The Taskforce’s members are diverse with respect to disciplines, methodologies, research questions, and normative priors. At this meeting of the taskforce, we welcome the participation of scholars who are interested in the intersection of the environment, politics, and technologies. We will update each other on recent activities; revising and finalizing our objectives and activities, with particular attention to strengthening connection to the new ESG science plan; and identify opportunities – including events and publications – for productive activities in the upcoming year.

Taskforce on Anticipatory Governance

Friday, 10 September 2021
08:30 – 13:00 CEST

Conveners:  Joost Vervoort and Aarti Gupta

Co-conveners: Dr. Lara Houston (University of Sussex); Prof. Ann Light (University of Sussex); Dr. Cristina Ampatzidou (RMIT Europe); Dr. Laura Pereira (Stockholm Resilience Centre); Dr. Manjana Milkoreit (University of Olso); Dr. Anab Jain (Superflux); Ruth Wolstenholme (Sniffer); Ruth Catlow (Furtherfield); Juli Sikorska (Utrecht University)

‘Imagination and anticipation’ is a core lens of the Earth System Governance project, and core to the interests of the ESG Taskforce on Anticipatory Governance. Anticipatory governance has proven to be a great connecting concept. The ESG Taskforce on Anticipatory Governance has been developing a global community bringing together academics and practitioners around futures and around sustainability governance. In the age of COVID, this community has largely revolved around a global Slack group of around 600 researchers, practitioners and policy makers from all around the world.

This session of the ESG Taskforce on Anticipatory Governance aims to bring together diverse researchers and practitioners from within and outside the Anticipatory Governance community (the slack and its 600 members) in an interactive workshop – to map theoretical and practical possibilities for the role of imagination and creative practices for transformative futures.

The workshop will be facilitated by Dr. Joost Vervoort and his team at Utrecht University, using a pre-designed Miro board combined with parallel breakout dialogues on specific themes, including:

a) The theoretical development of imagination as a component of anticipatory governance

b) How imagination is currently enabled and limited in anticipatory governance in practice

c) How creative practices can be supported to contribute to sustainability transformations

d) Transforming ‘regimes of value’ around creativity and the arts

f) The capacities and skills needed to support imaginative practices

Taskforce on Sustainable Development Goals

Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST

Conveners: Frank Biermann, Thomas Hickmann, Carole-Anne Sénit, and Yixian Sun

Established in March 2021, the Taskforce on Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs) is built on the SDG-related research completed in the Earth System Governance project since 2011 and the GLOBALGOALS project at Utrecht University. The new taskforce aims to formalize and strengthen a research community in the ESG network engaged in the study and practices of the SDGs. We are especially interested in furthering innovative and policy-relevant work on the impacts of the SDGs and their effects as a steering mechanism in earth system governance. Following the 2020 international conference on the SDGs and the SDG Mid-term Impact Assessment organized by the GlobalGoals team, we want to build more and larger collaborations in the next ten years among researchers around the world and at different career stages. We invite all conference participants interested in SDGs to join a half-day workshop (in the afternoon of Friday 10 September) to identify new research directions and brainstorm future activities (including webinar series, joint publications, and public engagement). The meeting will be facilitated by the taskforce co-convenors Frank Biermann, Thomas Hickmann, Carole-Anne Sénit, and Yixian Sun.

Taskforce on Knowledge Cumulation

Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 15:30 CEST

Conveners: Jens Newig and Michael Rose

The new Earth System Governance ‘Taskforce on Knowledge Cumulation’ seeks to bring together scholars that share a common interest in making ESG research – and environmental governance research more broadly – more cumulative. Valuing the diversity of research strands and epistemologies within the community, the Taskforce aims to foster collaboration on shared research agendas, theoretical approaches, frameworks, methods, and datasets.

Agenda of the inaugural meeting

  1. Introductory presentation by Jens Newig and Michael Rose.
  2. Round of introduction of potential members and their potential contributions to the taskforce.
  3. Presentation of priority issues identified at the Innovative Session on Knowledge Cumulation in ESG Research (9 September 2021, 10:30-12:00 CEST)
  4. Formal constitution / inauguration of the taskforce and initiation of a membership list.
  5. Joint discussion and decisions on next steps regarding possible activities and products, e.g. as listed on the webpage.

The taskforce welcomes everyone who is interested in joining this exciting endeavor! Participants of the inaugural meeting are encouraged but not required to become members of this new taskforce.

Taskforce on Governance for Nature and Biodiversity

Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST

Conveners: Hens Runhaar, Yves Zinngrebe

The loss in nature and biodiversity is one of the most pressing sustainability challenges of our time, an issue driven by human activity and exacerbated by climate change. This meeting, hosted at the Taskforce and Meeting Day on Friday 10 September, is a first step to establish an Earth System Governance Taskforce in response to such challenges.  

This Taskforce aims to bring together the dispersed communities of social scientists working the governance of nature on subjects including (but not limited to) meanings associated with nature and biodiversity and their implications, in urban and rural areas as well as across sectors such as agriculture, fisheries and forestry. This can concern a variety of themes and topics, for example: new forms of governance; effectiveness of public and private governance arrangements; legitimacy and contestation; and science-policy interfaces.  Led by conveners Hens Runhaar and Yves Zinngrebe, the meeting on 10th September will serve as an initial discussion on key themes that scholars wish to organize themselves around and formulate ways of working toward concrete outputs along the agreed themes. Ahead of the meeting, a survey will be circulated to interested scholars to prepare the discussions.

Taskforce on Ocean Governance

Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST

Convener: DG Webster, Leandra Goncalves, Atsushi Ishii, Judith van Leeuwen

The Taskforce on Oceans Governance seeks to address the daunting multi-level challenge of oceans governance in the Anthropocene. It serves as a platform in the Earth System Governance Project for oceans related research and will be actively cooperating with other research activities, as well as scientific and policy institutions, and ongoing policy processes related to the Oceans.

Activities during Taskforce Meeting:

1. Introductions and report on current activities
2.Working Group on UN Decade of Ocean Science
3. Working Group on the Blue Economy
4. Brainstorming new ideas

Taskforce on Planetary Justice

Friday, 10 September 2021
13:30 – 18:00 CEST

Conveners: Agni Kalfagianni, Stefan Pedersen and Dimitris Stevis

It has been four years since the formal launch of the Planetary Justice Taskforce and since then, discourses on planetary justice have been flourishing. Our own community, individually and collectively, has been actively driving and shaping such discourses through publications, conferences and meetings over these years. We believe we have moved past the first explorative phase of the concept of planetary justice and it is time to take stock of where we stand vis-à-vis related developments in environmental political theory and global development and related fields on the topic of justice in a planetary perspective.  What is needed currently, is a moment of reflection on the basis of which we can develop new ideas about how we can best move forward without losing momentum. This meeting is dedicated to taking stock of the research, education and practice of planetary justice and moving forward. The discussion will take place in a roundtable fashion with contributions from all participants involved.

Taskforce on Earth System Law

Friday, 10 September 2021
16:00 – 18:00 CEST

Conveners: Louis Kotzé and Kim Rak

Building on the previous meetings in Lund (2017), Utrecht (2018), Oaxaca (2019), and an online setting (2020), we will specifically reflect on how to expand the activities and impact of the Task Force beyond 2021. This will include:

  1. reflecting on the recent developments in the field;
  2. refining the shared scientific research agenda;
  3. discussing the ongoing special issue project with Earth System Governance;
  4. exploring alternative publications and research dissemination strategies.