Degrowth and Post-Extractivism - a Good Life for All?

WATCH THE RECORDING HERE.

When? Friday June 5th at 14.00-15.30 EEST

Where? Online on Zoom. Click here to join. 

Chair: Dr. Ossi Ollinaho, Post-doctoral researcher at Development Studies, University of Helsinki, member of both EXALT and HELSUS

Speaker: Dr. Marta Conde

The earth and all of its inhabitants are on a trajectory of cascading socio-ecological crisis driven by extractivist development and growth-centered economism. Like a snake eating its own tail, our progress-orientated and human-centered civilisation is built on the premise that there are no limits to growth. But rethinking growth and the current societal realities cannot be avoided anymore. Concurrent crisis such as the Climate Emergency are showing that the we are approaching the final frontiers of capitalist development. This realisation has given rise to calls such as “degrowth” and post-extractivism. 

In this online seminar we bring Degrowth and steady-state economics together with post-extractivism to seek alternatives for the current crisis-prone world-system. Through inclusive discussion we aim to explore the possibilities of building ecological and economic systems which function within the regenerative capacity of the planet, while at the same time enabling a "good life for all".

This seminar is part of a wider Global Degrowth Day organized each year to unite diverse organizations and communities, which support the idea of degrowth and want to show that “A good life for all” is possible beyond economies built on growth and consumption. The seminar is a joint venture between the EXALT initiative and the HELSUS Global South Encounters seminar series. 

Join us at the seminar to learn from a prominent researcher in the field of ecological economics and degrowth, and to take part in the discussion yourself. 

The event is open for everyone. Link will be published closer to the event. 

About the speaker:

Bio: Marta Conde is a researcher at the Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona at the Department of Political and Social Sciences. She holds a degree in Agricultural Engineering (UPC), masters in Environmental Science (Birkbeck College, London) and a doctorate in Ecological Economics (UAB). Dr. Conde has previously worked as a researcher at Durham University and the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Conde's research focuses on the social reactions to the expansion of extractive industries at the commodity frontiers, where succesful contestations of the imperative of endless economic growth can have direct and positive impacts in the lives of these communities. Using political ecology, ecological economics and political economy Conde studies the the drivers, strategies and discourses of resistance movements to mining. Conde's other research interests include the interactions between science, activism and knowledge-creation by grassroots organisation, the use and expansion of the concept of environmental justice in the South and the link between resource extraction and economic growth.

About the organizers: 

EXALT: The Global Extractivisms and Alternatives Initiative (EXALT) is an international network of scholars, activists, and policymakers dedicated to collaboration and knowledge creation around the pressing crisis stemming from extractivist policies and practices. This Initiative draws together diverse critical analyses of the phenomena of global extractivisms and the myriad alternatives being actively pursued in both theory and practice. It is the intention of this Initiative to contribute to, expand, and deepen the concept of extractivism and the role of alternatives beyond the conventional usage connected to natural resources.

HELSUS Global South Encounters Seminars is a series of seminars and small talks intended to sharpen critical research in sustainability science. The seminar series is a part of a Global South research theme at the Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS). Recognizing the complexities and peculiarities of the Global South, these seminars engage mainstream sustainability science in order to transcend it, among others by decolonizing nature, economy, society and methodologies. The seminars aim to open up space to get prior feedback on a forthcoming talk, an ongoing dissertation, a draft article, and a variety of research from students at all levels, academics, and members of the general public. Past seminars can be found here.

 

 

Listen to the seminar-recording:

 

EXALT-presentation: "Global Extractivisms: Unpacking and broadening the concept"

The HELSUS Global South Encounters is a series of seminars and small talks intended to sharpen critical research in sustainability science. Recognizing the complexities and peculiarities of the Global South, these seminars engage  mainstream sustainability science in order to transcend it, among others by decolonizing nature, economy, society and methodologies. The seminars aim to open up space to get prior feedback on a forthcoming talk, an ongoing dissertation, a draft article, and a variety of research from students at all levels, academics, and members of the general public. Encounters also welcome discussions on giving conference papers and celebrate/publicize published papers.

April 15th, at 13.00-14.30

Join the online-seminar via this link.

Speakers: 

  • Professor Barry Gills - professor of Development Studies at the University of Helsinki and a founding member of the EXALT Initiative
  • Saana Hokkanen - Research Assistant at EXALT
  • Chair: Markus Kröger - Associate professor of Development Studies, University of Helsinki

Presentation abstract:

The Global Extractivisms and Alternatives Initiative (EXALT) is a new international network of scholars, activists, and policymakers dedicated to collaboration and knowledge creation around the pressing crises stemming from extractivist policies and practices. This Initiative draws together diverse critical analyses of the phenomena of global extractivisms and the myriad alternatives being actively pursued in both theory and practice. This presentation aims to continue the discussion around extractivism and its alternatives, by offering a discussion-opener of critical and holistic understandings of extractivism as an organizing concept, beyond the conventional usage connected to natural resources. The presentation aims to explore the concept of “extractivism” via a range of social, cultural, and ecological perspectives.

Climate Emergency and Indigenous Peoples in the Arctic

March 12, 2020
13 – 15 at the Think Corner Stage

Climate emergency is accelerating in the Arctic region at an alarming rate. It is impacting the fragile ecosystems and diverse linguistic and cultural communities. Rampant extractivism and its consequent ecological destruction are eroding nature as well as the cultural fabric of local Indigenous communities. Intensive extraction of natural resources is fueling the scramble for the Arctic and tying the area tightly to the capitalist world-system.

This panel discussion will tackle the situations of Indigenous peoples in the changing Arctic, how livelihoods have started to alter and what roles does extractivism play with its myriad of direct and indirect consequences for the well-being of the Arctic. The panel offers a forum for Indigenous representatives and researchers to offer insights on the complex entanglement of climate emergency, Indigenous peoples' sovereignty and Arctic extractivism. It also addresses the questions of future generations and the Anthropocene from the perspective of Arctic Indigenous peoples.

In the context of changing ecosystems and neocolonial practices taking place in the North, there is an urgent need for radical new governance models for the whole of Arctic. As Indigenous peoples hold environmental knowledge crucial for producing sustainable practices in the region, their knowledge is vital in creating new governance models and offering already existing examples of sustainable resource management in the Arctic.

Speakers:

  • Leo Aikio - Elected Vice-president of the Finnish Sámi Parliament (saamelaiskäräjät) and a reindeer-herder from Inari, Sápmi
  • Hanna Guttorm - Postdoctoral researcher of Indigenous Studies at the University of Helsinki, member of INEQ and HELSUS

  • Dmitry Arzyutov - Researcher at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm

  • Atte Korhola - Professor of Environmental Change at the University of Helsinki

  • Panel host: Pirjo Kristiina Virtanen (Indigenous Studies, University of Helsinki)

The event is co-organized by The Global Extractivisms and Alternatives Initiative (EXALT), the Indigenous Studies programme and ALL-YOUTH -research project funded by the Strategic Research Council (SRC).

The event is open for everyone, free of charge and you can also follow the discussion via live-stream.

Video-recording of the event.

January 16, 2020, 13 – 15 at the Think Corner Stage

Earth is currently facing an unprecedented climate emergency, which has arrived and is accelerating faster than most scientists expected. It is more severe than anticipated, threatening natural ecosystems and the fate of humanity. The need for deep and transformative action is urgent, and universities are in a key position to work as pioneers in sustainable climate action.

This brainstorming dialogue will feature 3 short talks (from a representative from the university management, a professor, and a student activist) and a facilitated panel discussion exploring questions such as: How could and should the University of Helsinki address the climate emergency? What can researchers, students and university governance do? What does a university as a climate actor look like?

Speakers:

University Management: Vice-Rector Tom Böhling

Professor: Dr. Barry Gills, Development Studies

Student Activist: Laura Kolehmainen, founder of Ilmastoveivi and Climate Move, student of politics and law

Facilitator: Dr. Ossi Ollinaho, HELSUS and EXALT

The aim of the event is to offer a forum to discuss and reflect on the university's own position as part of a currently unsustainable society, but also to tap into its potential in countering the climate emergency and finding solutions toward a sustainable future with a focus on developing the basis for concrete proposals for action by the University.

The event is co-organized by The Global Extractivisms and Alternatives Initiative (EXALT) and the Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS).

The event at the Think Corner stage is open for all with no registration. If you are planning to join us from 15 – 16 for Coffee/Conversation at the HELSUS Hub Lounge (Porthania 2nd floor, Yliopistonkatu 3), please fill in this e-lomake to let us know.  We ask for registration so we can order an appropriate amount of coffee and reduce any potential waste.

Event’s Facebook-page

We hope to see you on January 16 to discuss this important and timely topic!

Professor Barry Gills' talk at the event "(Re)purposing the University to tackle the Climate Emergency" at the University of Helsinki, January 16th, 2020

SEE THE FULL EVENT VIDEO STREAM HERE!