Sub-theme 15 [SWG 15]: System Change, Not Climate Change: Mobilizing for System-Level Change to Address the Environmental Crisis
Paul S. Adler, University of Southern California, USA, email@example.com
Ana María Peredo, University of Ottawa, Canada, firstname.lastname@example.org
Pilar Acosta, École Polytechnique, France, email@example.com
Call for submissions:
Humanity is indeed at a crossroads. We have been slow to recognize the environmental crisis, but awareness is now dawning that hugely consequential choices will need to be made in the coming years, at every scale from the individual, to the firm, to national and international governance. So far, responses have been entirely inadequate to the magnitude of the challenge (United Nations, 2022). But how do we mobilize the energy for a more robust response? The premise of our Standing Working Group 15 at EGOS is that as scholars we need to pay more attention to the system-level factors – as distinct from the individual or firm-level factors – that have created the climate crisis, and to the system-level responses that are need. In the previous meetings of our SWG, we considered theoretical frames that shed light on the systemic origins of our assault on the environment. We then considered the impediments that exist at that systemic level to recognizing and responding to the looming crisis. That led us to an attempt to identify and examine alternative systems for organizing economic life that could support a sustainable future. At the 2024 Colloquium, we will build on these earlier discussions to explore the pathways that would create such a future. It is clear that the 'business sustainability-as-usual' approach that dominates our field is inadequate to the task. So how do we get from here to there? The most vocal voices demanding a system-level response to the environmental crisis are not political leaders and governments, but social and political movements. We need to understand better the organization and dynamic of these movements, their demands, and how they interact with each other, as well as with industries and government to advance their causes (see Soule & King, 2008; de Bakker et al., 2013; Martínez-Alier et al., 2014; Temper et al., 2015). At the same time, we need to explore how other civil society actors, such as the scientific community, can push for a more adequate response to climate change. We also need different relational ontologies that can facilitate imagining different human-nature relationships (Banerjee & Arjailes, 2021). A key concern in mobilizing for system-level change is climate justice because climate change has disproportionately harmful impacts on poorer populations, Black and other people of color across the world Those that have contributed the least to the problem are dying and suffering the most. Thus, political struggles for climate justice must be central to our inquiries on system level changes (Ergene et al., 2021). For our sub-theme in Milan, we invite submissions that explore the activities and strategic actions of a variety of actors aiming at the system-level changes we so urgently need. We invite papers that use any of a wide variety of theoretical and disciplinary lenses. Among the possible topics are:
The submission process:
Short papers must be submitted by Tuesday, January 9, 2024, 23:59:59 CET [Central European Time]. About 3,000 words (incl. references, appendices and other material) is usually sufficient, but our Sub-theme also accepts longer submissions. These should focus on the main ideas of the paper -- the purpose of the paper, theoretical background, the research need that is addressed, the approach taken, the methods of analysis (in empirical papers), main findings, and contributions – and should indicate clearly how the paper links with the Sub-theme's goals. Decisions will be sent out toward the end of February, and if your Short paper is accepted, you will have until mid-June to submit the Full paper. See the EGOS website for details. Note that we are also organizing a PDW, where less-developed papers and research proposals are welcome.