Visualizing the future – charting pathways for sustainable development with participatory art and scenario thinking

Project: ResearchInterdisciplinary research

Research areas and keywords

UKÄ subject classification

  • Agricultural Science, Forestry and Fisheries
  • Visual Arts
  • Environmental Sciences
  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

Keywords

  • Participatory art, inclusive development, future scenarios, socio-economic and environmental change, downscale shared socio-economic pathways, transformation

Description

Across the world, poor and vulnerable communities experience escalating challenges associated with local manifestations of climate change, as well as pressures from the opening and closing of capitalist frontiers. My three-year postdoc project aims to support such communities’ agency in dealing with such pressures by developing novel approaches to co-create knowledge and facilitate communication of local sustainability challenges.

By combining participatory art and scenario thinking I will generate viable future scenarios, including a range of pathways for development. Tanzania constitutes a suitable context for such action-oriented research due to its economic development towards “jobless” large-scale agriculture, extractivism, and ecotourism. This type of development in the context of population growth, land-based livelihoods, and less available land, has enhanced inequalities and created new classes of landless and underemployed rural people increasingly vulnerable to environmental and economic shocks and stress. It is therefore important to identify local socio-economic and environmental challenges and interactions, and initiate discussions about how these challenges might develop under different socio-economic assumptions and scenarios. The ultimate purpose of using art in the scenario process is to create viable development pathways based on local concerns and aspirations, and as a communication tool for presenting challenges and opportunities under different futures.

The postdoc is conducted at the Department of Agricultural Extension and Community Development (DAECD), Sokoine University of Agriculture; the Department of Food and Resource Economics (IFRO), University of Copenhagen; and at Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies (LUCSUS), Lund University.
StatusActive
Effective start/end date2020/02/012023/01/31

Collaborative partners

Participants