By Dr. Maryam Nastar
In August 29th – 31st, 2016, LUCSUS (Lund University Center for Sustainability Studies) hosted a 3-ECTS PhD course “Niches in Transition Arenas: Critical Perspectives” as a part of capacity building initiatives by the transition management working group of the T-GroUp project, in Lund, Sweden.
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Recently, the Dutch Research Institute for Transitions (DRIFT) from the Erasmus University Rotterdam in the Netherlands, joined T-GroUP. DRIFT focuses on studying Sustainability Transitions and is the internationally leading institute in Transition Management (TM). The DRIFT team is a transdisciplinary and international group of researchers and advisors. DRIFT combines research on social innovation, sustainability transitions, policy, governance and innovation, with consultancy and training programs for governmental institutions, businesses and intermediary organisations. DRIFT is involved in local, national and international projects concerned with health, youth, urban planning, energy, water, food and various other sectors.
Within T-GroUP, DRIFT will support local transition teams to adapt and apply TM as a transdisciplinary and participatory approach in the three case studies in order to find innovative and sustainable solutions and new collaborations among the multiple local stakeholders to use and manage (ground)water. DRIFT will work closely together with the already involved institutes and especially those working on governance (action) research. The researchers from DRIFT that contribute to T-GroUP are dr. Roel van Raak, specialized in transition policy, dr. Julia Wittmayer, specialized in action research and urban transitions, and Giorgia Silvestri, specializing in participatory methods and sustainability transitions in a developing context.
DRIFT welcomes the T-GroUP invitation to join the group. The objectives and activities of T-GroUP fit very well with the DRIFT research agenda and more generally with the interests of the transition studies research community to learn more about applying TM in a non-western context. Furthermore, DRIFT is looking forward to collaborate with all T-GroUP partners in their ambitions to introduce this governance and participatory approach in the context of sub-Saharan urban (ground)water management and thus increasing the societal relevance of their research and education.
Dr. Roel van Raak of DRIFT explaining TM in a nutshell in front of an audience of T-GroUP members