Monday, September 30, 2013

CfP - Earth System Governance Norwich Conference

CfP - Earth System Governance Norwich Conference

Earth System Governance Norwich Conference: Access and Allocation in the Anthropocene

University of East Anglia, 1-3 July 2014

We invite you to the 2014 Norwich Conference on Earth System Governance on "Access and Allocation in the Anthropocene", to be held 1-3 July 2014 at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, UK. This event will be the fifth in a global conference series organized by the Earth System Governance Project, a ten-year research programme under the auspices of the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environmental Change (IHDP). The 2014 Norwich Conference on Earth System Governance will be jointly hosted by the University of East Anglia and the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research on behalf of the Earth System Governance Project.

About Earth System Governance

The challenge of establishing effective strategies for mediating the relationship between humans and the natural world represents one of the most daunting tasks in the quest for environmental sustainability at all levels, from the local to the global. Environmental problems, such as climate change, biodiversity loss, water quality and access problems, soil erosion and others, call into question the fundamental viability of how humans have organized the relationship between society and nature. There is an urgent need to identify and develop new strategies for steering societies towards a more sustainable relationship with the natural world.

The Earth System Governance Project was launched in 2009 to address these problems of environmental governance. In this project, "earth system governance" is defined as the interrelated system of formal and informal rules, rule-making mechanisms and actor-networks at all levels of human society (from local to global) that are set up to steer societies towards preventing, mitigating, and adapting to global and local environmental change and earth system transformation, within the normative context of sustainable development. The Earth System Governance Project's Science Plan (available at is organized around five analytical themes. Architecture relates to the emergence, design and effectiveness of governance arrangements. Agency addresses questions of who governs the earth system and how. Adaptiveness research explores the ability of governance systems to change in the face of new knowledge and challenges as well as to enhance adaptiveness of social-ecological systems in the face of major disturbances. Accountability refers to the democratic quality of environmental governance arrangements. Finally, access and allocation deal with justice, equity, and fairness.

The 2014 Norwich Conference on Earth System Governance will address these five analytical themes with a special focus on access and allocation.

Conference Themes

Access and Allocation of Resources (Water, Food, Energy, Health and Wellbeing, Forests and Carbon Rights)

Access and Allocation not only relates to material resources (e.g. water, forests) but also to the access and allocation of immaterial values such as rights, benefits, responsibilities and risks. Issues of access and allocation demand new answers in times of the Anthropocene, an era of human-dominated ecosystems. Such responses need to be interdisciplinary and reconcile with governance effectiveness. Conflicts about natural resources such as water, forests, food, energy and carbon are in essence questions related to the allocation of and access to these resources, and often linked to concepts of security, i.e. "food security" and "water security".

Transformative Pathways to Sustainability

This theme is one of three themes under Future Earth and attempts to understand transformation processes and options across sectors and scales to identify strategies for the sustainable governance of the global environment and the relationship to human values, emerging technologies and economic paradigms. It will address the various blockages to these transformations and how to overcome them. This analysis will also involve new forms of localism and collective self-reliance at the scale of community across the whole planet.

Papers addressing the other analytical themes of architecture, agency, adaptiveness and accountability as well as methodological issues relevant for earth system governance research, the science-society interface and interdisciplinarity are also invited.

Submission Process

Abstracts must be submitted electronically by 15 November 2013 and not exceed 300 words.

Key Dates

Deadline for abstract submission: 15 November 2013
Notifications sent: 1 February 2015
Paper submission deadline for Oran R. Young Prize for best early-career paper (see below): 15 May 2014
Announcement of Oran R. Young Prize winner: 1 July 2014

Review Process - For more information see here.

2014 Oran Young Prize - For more information see here.

Conference website: 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Registration open for "Biodiversity Resilience" symposium

Oxford Biodiversity Institute is holding its third annual symposium on the subject of "Biodiversity Resilience" on the 2nd and 3rd of October, 2013. You are warmly invited to register for this event , which is open to all. Online registration is via the symposium webpage at .


The symposium will bring together over 30 international speakers, presenting the latest research and developments surrounding the resilience of populations and ecosystems.

Sessions will include:

·         What is the role of biodiversity in ecosystem function and resilience?

·         Policy Trade-offs for Biodiversity Resilience

·         How does genomic biodiversity contribute to ecological resilience?

·         Landscape resilience and biodiversity in arid environments

·         Resilience in Oceans

·         The importance of long-term ecological studies

·         Factors influencing the resilience of populations and ecosystems to perturbation

·         Landscape resilience and biodiversity in arid environments

·         Governing for resilience


A formal poster session will also be held, please consider presenting one when you register.

Details of sessions and speakers is on the symposium webpage at

Registration costs (which includes lunches, refreshments and a wine reception):

Early Bird Registration (available until 1st September 2013) - £75.00
Standard Registration - £100.00
BCM Alumni or any student - £30.00


You can book accommodation in Oxford colleges by following links on  the symposium website.

We will be posting updates of the symposium programme on Twitter at @bioinstituteox so please follow us and participate in the pre-symposium discussions with the hashtag #BioSymOx

Please feel free to forward this invitation to any of your colleagues who might find it interesting.

For further information, please contact



Ruth Brandt, symposium administrator

Biodiversity Institute

Department of Zoology

The Tinbergen Building

South Parks Road

Oxford OX1 3PS

Tel +44(0)1865 281851