Call for Sessions: Sustainability Science Days 2022

Invitation for scientific leaders from different universities to propose sessions for Sustainability Science Days conference 2022: Systemic Transformations to Sustainable Futures. The international, two-day conference will be held on May 18-19, 2022. Please send your session proposal by November 7, 2021.

As part of the academic program, the Sustainability Science Days 2022 will host a science track of parallel sessions on both conference days, May 18th and 19th. The sessions include presentations from researchers, practitioners or transdisciplinary author teams followed by discussions with the audience. The presenters of the sessions are invited through an open Call for Papers that will be opened in November 2021.

The sessions are to be convened by two or more scientific leaders from at least two different institutions. The conveners of the sessions will decide independently on the acceptance of paper/presentation abstracts to their session. There will be a meeting of conveners to discuss their choices and possibility to allocate papers from one session to another if needed. This gives also a possibility for conveners to share ideas and give peer-support on ways to organize the sessions.

The session proposals can, but are not restricted to, be linked to the following broader thematic areas. Interested conveners are also encouraged to propose other themes with connection to the overall thematic of the conference:

  • How to formulate and enact interventions focusing on deep leverage points of systemic change?
  • How to build better agency among different societal actors (including citizens and communities) toward acting for change, and especially how to promote inclusion and participation of marginalised groups in the change processes?
  • How can sustainability design, different types of knowledge production and ways of knowing be integrated especially in the field of just transitions?
  • How to ensure that the transition towards sustainable futures is just and intersects the need for achieving sustainability, equity and social justice globally? 
  • How can novel solutions (technical, social, organisational) be co-created, communicated and implemented to enhance sustainability transformations?
  • How do different transdisciplinary approaches ( experiments, pilots, innovations, design, arts and other creative means) generate transformative capacity for actors that can further develop, shape, recreate and change different practices for sustainable change?
  • How can different approaches that take into account human and non-human relations such as planetary wellbeing foster systemic transformation to a sustainable future?  
  • In a globally connected world, how can we ensure that the sustainability and responsibility of organisations extend across value chains and promote collaborative practices to enhance sustainability transformation?

We now invite interested scientific leaders to propose parallel sessions including:

  • a brief description (max. 200 words) of the more specific theme of the session within the overall thematic focus of the Days
  • the name of at least one of the conveners (Our project team will provide assistance in seeking a convener partner, if needed)

Please send your proposal by email to by Sunday, 7th of November and consider forwarding this invitation in your networks.

About the conference:

The Sustainability Science Days is an international, two-day conference organised jointly by Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS) and Aalto University on 18-19.5.2022.This year the conference will focus on the theme of systemic transformations to sustainable futures in a globally connected world and highlight the urgency to act now.

The urgency for systemic sustainability transformations has been here for a long time. Transformations in multiple systems have been ongoing for a while; however, pace of change has been much slower than previously foreseen. We need more understanding of the interlinkages between sectors, actors, geographies, markets, practices and lifestyles as these have significant relevance for the impact and pace of change. 

The pandemic has further highlighted that we live in a globally connected world; our overreliance on economic growth and increasing levels of consumption has made us extremely vulnerable to and unprepared for different kinds of systemic shocks. Living in this era has underlined once more the urgency of accelerating transformative change towards sustainable and just futures worldwide by envisioning solutions that would cater to societal needs within the planet’s biophysical boundaries.

Furthermore, the growth of social and spatial polarization in both urban and rural areas is a rising challenge. Although new technologies offer hope, growing urban socio-spatial segregation and the decline of rural peripheries, pose major challenges for simultaneously addressing both climate change mitigation and adaptation and embedded social inequalities. Globally inclusive and just sustainability transformations are urgently needed - but how do we get there? Transformations also mean phasing out from the current non-sustainable practices while simultaneously nurturing and accelerating adoption of more sustainable ones, through active experimentation, piloting and accelerated diffusion of new promising solutions. This also requires responding to the new knowledge needs, and better taking into account different forms of knowledge, including indigenous and local knowledge.

For more information visit the Conference website