Conference 2024 - At Home?

A just and sustainable future can only be reached with a feeling of HOME for all. All living creatures need a safe place where they can grow and flourish. But what constitutes HOME? What is a sustainable HOME, in the broadest sense, and how do we achieve that?

Join us! Registration is open

HOME is a place: your house, street, region, the earth, the ocean. HOME is also a feeling of belonging, of safety, of family, of food, of memories. It transcends geographical boundaries and cultural divides. HOME changes, evolving with environmental and societal shifts, technological innovations and personal experiences. Due to many of these changes our HOME currently faces a broad set of ecological threats, resulting in the displacement of both humans and non-humans. As many people see HOME threatened by climate change, conflicts which can be catalyzed by environmental pressure, and economic realities, HOME can evoke mixed emotions and feelings of social injustice.

HOME is important to everyone but it is also under pressure in many ways. Young people who cannot find housing of their own, homes that are in places that are no longer safe due to climate change, wars that destroy homes, refugees who have to sleep outside. Though our conference will not solve these issues, we aim to raise awareness of the underlying challenges and issues and understanding of pathways needed for a sustainable HOME, including water management, energy use, food production, protection and restoration of biodiversity and circular systems, and the societal implications of these pathways.

9.30 - 12.30 Plenary morning programme

In the morning we offer you a diversity of voices, experiences and pathways to help understanding and create a sustainable and just HOME for all.

In addition to being (Assistant) Professors, Hanneke van Eijken and Mia You are professional poets. Hanneke van Eijken is one of the 'stadsdichters' of Utrecht and writes poetry and performs at literary festivals. Her collection of poetry was published in ‘Papieren veulens’ and 'Kozijnen van Krijt'. Mia You is author of the poetry collection 'I, Too, Dislike It' and has published in Artforum, Boston Review, Los Angeles Review of Books and Poetry, among others.

Carolyn Steel is a leading thinker on food and cities. She is the author of Hungry City: How Food Shapes Our Lives and Sitopia: How Food Can Save the World. Her concept of sitopia, or food-place (from the Greek sitos, food + topos, place) has gained broad recognition across a wide range of fields in design, ecology, academia and the arts. Climate change, mass extinction, soil erosion, food-related diseases and zoonosis-induced pandemics are just some of the consequences of the way we eat today. But at the same time, food offers a way out of all these woes.

Emanuele Fantini is senior lecturer and researcher in water politics and communication at IHE Delft Institute for Water Education. Emanuele’s research and teaching focus on the role of media and communication in water conflicts and collaborations, in different contexts and at different scales. For instance international river basins like the Nile or social movements against water privatisation in Italy. Committed to public engagement and transdisciplinary projects with artists, photographers and journalists, Emanuele hosts the podcasts 'The Sources of the Nile', 'The House of Water' and 'Si dice acqua', and he is the editor of IHE Delft Water Governance Blog FLOWs.

Lilian Farahani is a Dutch-Iranian soprano. Together with her pianist Maurice Lammerts van Bueren she will perform during the conference. With her most recent album, Nomad, she explores travelling and the feeling of Home. Travel, who doesn’t love it? But we also like to come home again. Nomads are at home everywhere. Or nowhere.

Foto van Kim Coppes

Moderator of the day is Kim Coppes. Kim is an experienced chairwoman of the day, with a background in theatre, communications and journalism. Relaxed and sharp. Alert and with sense of humour. She will do her best to make us all feel at home during the conference!

Pathways to Sustainability Award

During the day, voting will also take place for the third Pathways to Sustainability Award. This award was launched to recognize research projects that combine the strength of Utrecht University's research with the agendas of external stakeholders, for the benefit of a sustainable future for all. A jury will select the three best projects out of the submitted nominations. You, as a conference participant, can then vote for your favorite project. Nomination is now open!

12.30 - 14.00 Lunch

Over lunch, there is ample opportunity to talk to people and we offer you a variety of projects and initiatives that you can visit, such as video games, climate poets and more.

14.00 - Breakout sessions

In the afternoon we will break out into various sessions, to explore how we can become more impactful, in the university and in society at large. You can actively participate in one of the breakout sessions.

16.00 - Plenary wrap up and drinks

We will end the day together. Inspired, with lots of ideas to think about, we will part around 17:00.

Pathways to Sustainability Conference

Date: Thursday 28 November 2024, 9:30 - 17:00
Venue: TivoliVredenburg Utrecht
Admission: Free of charge, please register here