SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit

SPRU at STEPS Centre Conference: Resource Politics

This week the STEPS Centre is hosting a major international conference, Resource Politics: Transforming Pathways to Sustainability at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS).

Over three days of discussion, the STEPS Centre and its partners hope that the Resource Politics conference will help to unpack assumptions, question simplistic prescriptions and debate alternatives about the politics of resources and pathways to sustainability.

SPRU is a proud co-hosts the STEPS Centre, in partnership with IDS, and a number of SPRU academics are involved in the conference. See below an overview of our involvement.  

Assessing global sustainability assessments: The challenge of creating international knowledge in the face of divergent framings
Professor Erik Millstone will be co-convening the session with John Thompson from IDS and talk about An assessment of global agricultural assessments.

Pathways to sustainable urbanisation: Waste and the circular economy in South Asia
Professor Fiona Marshall will co-convene this session with Pritpal Randhawa from Jawaharlal Nehru University.

Open science and sustainability
Professor James Wilsdon will be on the panel of this session discussing Open season: What does all this talk of openness mean for science, democracy and sustainability?

Resource politics/resource states: The political economy of energy in Africa
Our research fellow Dr Lucy Baker will be speaking about The evolving role of finance in South Africa’s renewable energy sector.

Sustainability transitions and wider transformative change
SPRU Director Professor Johan Schot will convene this session with Dr Florian Kern also taking part.

The full programme is available on the Resource Politics conference website, and you can follow some of the debate on twitter, via the hashtag #resourcepol.  The main themes of the conference include:

  • Scarcity, politics and securitisation
  • The politics of the Anthropocene and resilience
  • Science, democracy and sustainability
  • Commodification, grabs and dispossession
  • Social justice and citizenship 

The STEPS Centre is an interdisciplinary global research and policy engagement centre uniting development studies with science and technology studies. The centre is based at IDS and SPRU and works with a network of partners in Asia, Africa, Latin America and Europe. Their cross-cutting work covers agriculture & food; energy & climate change; health & disease and water & sanitation.