The Regional Dimension of Future Earth and its Role for a Sustainable World

Organizer: Thabo Dikgale
Format: Online, Evening

Future Earth’s mission is to advance research in support of transformations to global sustainability. While pursuing a research programme designed to provide the knowledge needed to support transformations towards sustainability on a global scale, it was recognized that research and innovation would have to address the regional to local scale on an equal footing. This need arises from the fact that science must engage with policy- and decision makers, the private sector and key stakeholders on this scale in order to serve the needs of the “people on the ground”. The significant diversity between the Future Earth regional centres in terms of their political, socio- economic, cultural and bio- physical/geo-chemical settings represents an obstacle to clearly identifying the “regional dimension” of Future Earth. This session will interrogate the utility and roles of Future Earth regional centres may play in realising Future Earth’s vision and achieving transformational societal impact. An expected outcome of the session is stronger alignment of regional activities and proposed methods for closer regional collaboration and synthesis in both operations and project implementation. A key outcome of the session will be to conceptualise a draft inter- regional collaborative framework that considers multiple stakeholder views from academia, policy and civil society. This session will also seek to add new layers of knowledge to the Future Earth initiative by exploring existing and new science-to-policy strategies that will take into account the inter-linkages and inter-dependencies between science practitioners, users and policy makers. The implications of Future Earth’s transition agenda and processes will also be considered. A key objective of the session will be to discuss the suitability of strategies developed at the global scale for their applicability on the regional to local scale and to adjust existing strategies to serve this aim.

Themes: Sustainable Solutions from the Global South, Knowledge-to-Action