Global transformations – local struggles

Future Earth KAN: transformations, but also links to Natural Assets, Urban, Food-Water-Energy Nexus, SDGs etc.

Session topic and link to SDGs

The successful implementation of the SDGs must bridge global target setting and monitoring with local and regional processes that are often highly contested. Very important are efforts to transform the global distribution of resources and their social and ecological impacts.  In particular for SDG 12 and SDG 15, but also for other SDGs, global biophysical constraints as much as telecouplings between different world regions must be considered.  At the same time, ecological and social conditions at local scale must be taken seriously to achieve a successful implementation.  Meanwhile, in many parts of the world networks of scholars and praxis partners exist that address these challenges from a local or regional perspective.  The aim of the proposed session is to create a room for exchange between the experiences and practical achievements of these networks and to better integrate their experiences in global transformation research and in transnational KAN.  At the same time, biophysical as much as societal constraints (including distributional and spatial external effects) must be considered to create fair and feasible global transformation pathways.  The session will bring together experiences from different socio-economic, socio-cultural and political background and link their experiences to inter- and transdisciplinary research.  It will discuss important topics for sustainability transformations (resource use, resource extractivism, urbanisation, water management etc.). The major aim is to improve transdisciplinarity and co-production of knowledge important for sustainability transformations at global scale.

Relevance of the Session:

The guiding question is how to better address cross-scale interactions in societal and biophysical terms and to improve co-production of knowledge for sustainability transformations across different world regions and knowledge types?


Beatriz Rodríguez-Labajos, Begüm Özkaynak, Environmental justice through the lens of mining conflicts, Geoforum, Volume 84, 2017, Pages 245-250. (

Görg, C.; Brand, U.; Haberl, H.; Hummel, D.; Jahn, T.; Liehr, S. Challenges for Social-Ecological Transformations: Contributions from Social and Political Ecology. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1045. (