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‘Back to the communities’ The role of grassroots initiatives in sustainability transitions

The CEU Campus
Wednesday, October 18, 2017, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm

You are cordially invited to a public lecture by the
Department of Environmental Sciences and Policy on:
‘Back to the communities’
The role of grassroots initiatives in sustainability transitions

Dr. Gabriella Dóci

Introduction: Dr. Laszlo Pinter, Professor and Acting Head of Department, Department of Environmental Sciences and Policy and Senior Fellow, International Institute for Sustainable Development

Abstract: The lecture focuses on how social/technological solutions "lock-in" into modern society, with complete infrastructures developing around them, and create thereby a fundamentally new regime. As a consequence, it is very difficult to replace locked-in structures. The concept of sustainability transition deals with unraveling the processes behind socio-technological lock-in, as well as with overcoming them. In order to transform the current market regime into a sustainable one both top-down and bottom-up approaches are required and should be increasingly advocated. Grassroots initiatives can play an important role in the required changes. These are value driven residential communities, which decide to change their passive status and assume control over local level production (energy, agriculture) to satisfy their own needs. Acquiring knowledge on these initiatives helps to better understand how the new prototype of actors could be strengthened and to what extent it can contribute to sustainability transition.

Presenter: Gabriella Dóci is an organizational sociologist with expertise in grassroots innovations and renewable energy. She holds a PhD in Environmental Studies from the VU University Amsterdam. Her research has studied the formation and organization of community-based, grassroots initiatives in the context of sustainability transitions. Prior to her researcher career, she worked for different NGOs such as Greenpeace and Amnesty International on social and environmental issues.