Anthropocene and social sciences - symposium and summer school

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Wil Burns

Apr 10, 2024, 10:55:28 AMApr 10
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FYI. wil







Wil Burns 

Co-Director, Institute for Responsible Carbon Removal,

American University 
Visiting Professor, Environmental Policy & Culture Program, Northwestern University


Mobile: 312.550.3079



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Fancy a conversation? Click here to schedule via my Calendly site (phone call, Zoom, and Microsoft Team options):




We're interested in having lawyers, political scientists, and others involved in environmental governance participate (I'm a founding member of the hosting group), so please share this with those who  you think will be interested -


With support from the National Science Foundation, Rutgers University-New Brunswick's Department of Human Ecology and Rutgers Climate and Energy Institute are engaging in activities around sustainability and governance in the Anthropocene this year, with two upcoming events of potential interest.


This new initiative, funded from the NSF program on Centers for Research and Innovation in Science, the Environment and Society (CRISES), is focused on finding solutions grounded in insights from the social science for the unprecedented rate and magnitude of social and environmental changes in the Anthropocene. This will require innovations across knowledge systems, attention to coproduction of solutions with multiple stakeholders who are empowered to act, and advances in understanding desirable visions of the future and how to achieve them. The team is designing a future Center on Sustainability and Governance in the Anthropocene (C-SAGA) that focuses on innovative interdisciplinary social science research that develops and assesses needed new forms of environmental governance.


We have a launch symposium on May 7 that will feature three renowned social scientists addressing how to manage major challenges like climate change, food security, and biodiversity loss in the face of accelerating human pressure, increasing complexity, and persistent inequality. The day-long event will feature talks by Dr. Jennifer Clapp, Canada Research Chair & Professor, School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability, University of Waterloo, Canada; Dr. Ratana Chuenpagdee, Professor, Department of Geography, Memorial University of Newfoundland; and Dr. Meredith Gore, Associate Professor, Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Maryland College Park. We would welcome attendance in person or online; please register here by May 1 to attend


We are also running an inaugural summer school for early career Ph.D. students working on governance and sustainability here at Rutgers August 20-23. The goal of the Summer School is to increase the capacity of early-stage researchers to learn more about this field and the need for interdisciplinary scholarship and collaboration. During the workshop, we will bring together scholars from a range of disciplines in a small group setting to learn, exchange ideas, and build partnerships. Training on essential skills will be offered on topics suited to the applicants, and may include working in collaborative governance, science communication, social science methods, and grant and publication guidance. Faculty from across Rutgers working in the sustainability governance area will opportunities for career advice, mentorship, and networking. At the end of the workshop, the relationships built with other students will provide mutual support for the future. Additional information can be found here: and applications are due May 15:




Cymie R. Payne

Associate Professor, Rutgers University

SEBS-Human Ecology & Law School

International Union for Conservation of Nature - World Commission on Environmental Law



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