Call for sub-themes at the joint conference of the International Degrowth Research Network and the International Society for Ecological Economics
We are delighted to announce that the first ever joint conference between the International Degrowth Research Network and the International Society for Ecological Economics will take place 1-5 September 2020 in Manchester, UK. This conference will bring together academics from the Degrowth and Ecological Economics communities, voices from the Global North and Global South, civil society actors, activists, artists and policy-makers. It aims to break down silos and stimulate dialogues between and within different perspectives, disciplines and social movements.
Building Alternative Livelihoods in times of political and ecological crisis is the overarching theme of the conference. Economic systems have always co-evolved with social, environmental and technological systems. The worsening ecological and climate crisis means we must urgently abandon practices of production and consumption associated with ecological degradation and rely on unsustainable extractivism. We must develop alternative livelihoods which are harmonious with planetary limits and safeguard material living conditions. We must invent and trial new ways of working, providing for everyone’s needs, caring for each other and democratising the economy. We must seek clarity about the systems of provisioning which will be utilised in a society beyond growth where states and markets play more peripheral roles in the allocation of resources. In short, we must ask what are the alternative livelihoods which ensure the future conditions of societal wellbeing.
The construction of alternative livelihoods entails a radical transformation of economy, culture and society. What are the institutional arrangements which safely provide for basic needs, social stability and democratic legitimacy in the transition to environmental sustainability? How can both social justice and ecological justice for the populations of the Global North and the Global South be ensured? How can political support be mobilised for the necessary transformations? How can the transition to environmental sustainability be made politically viable and democratically legitimate?
We list below some of the topics that the conference could cover. We also look forward to ideas beyond these, which would expand the geographical and thematic scope of degrowth, as well as advance and further substantiate current degrowth debates and debates in ecological economics.
- the economy beyond states and markets
- the future of employment, work and care
- debates on degrowth, green growth, the circular economy, and decoupling
- the democratisation of the economy and alternative models and forms of organisation
- the production and conservation of energy
- low carbon and low energy futures
- forms of decommodification and non-capitalist modes of resource allocation
- commoning resources
- money, debt and the financial system
- financing the (transition to a) post-growth society “
- monetary and non-monetary measures of prosperity and well-being
- a universal basic income or universal basic services
- the green new deal
- the decentralisation of power
- decolonization and feminist economics as challenges to power
- post- growth policy-making, law and governance
- how to respond to the ethno-nationalist environmentalism and anti-environmentalism of ascendant populist groups
- the politics of transitions to sustainability and the lessons to be learned from past socio-economic and cultural transformation
- spatial issues: planning, housing and the future of cities
- diversity: class, race, gender, abilities
- Sustainable Development Goals
- conflict resolution processes and socio-ecological transformations
- biodiversity, ecosystem services, and sustainable livelihoods
- social metabolism
- political economy and ecological economics/degrowth
- sustainable livelihoods and ecological sufficiency
- languages of valuation and ecological conflicts
- extractivism, environmental justice and illicit activities
- social ecological economics
- production and consumption
- slow science and degrowth of publication economy
- strategies for degrowth transformation: lessons from the Vienna conference
There will be two stages for the call for academic and activist contributions. The first stage is a call for sub-theme conveners. Academics and activists who wish to actively participate in these sub-themes or suggest new sub-themes for inclusion in the conference should submit a proposal by 30th October 2019 Descriptions of the sub-themes should speak to the overall conference theme and be no longer than 250 words. It should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each sub-theme can go from one to four sessions, with up to four papers or other contributions per session. There are many formats which a session can adopt, including the traditional format of paper presentations with a specific thematic focus, roundtable discussions, and participatory sessions encouraging reflection on a particular topic using an open format (e.g. discussion workshops, dialogical/reading/planning sessions, walks, etc.). Sub-theme leaders will be given full autonomy and responsibility for the organisation of sub-themes.
See the announcement of the conference in Manchester here.