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PHD-DESIGN  November 2018

PHD-DESIGN November 2018


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Climate Futures, Design and the Just Transition RISD Nov 9th and 10th Livestreaming


Damian White <[log in to unmask]>


PhD-Design - This list is for discussion of PhD studies and related research in Design <[log in to unmask]>


Fri, 2 Nov 2018 12:23:51 -0400





text/plain (337 lines)

Dear colleagues.

Just letting you know that Liberal Arts at RISD in collaboration with the
Nature-Culture Sustainability Graduate Program, The Climate and Development
Lab at Brown, The Political Science at Providence College and Critical
Design/Critical Futures is hosting a event next week on Climate Futures,
Design and the Just Transition. Ticket and live streaming details below.
Apologies in advance for cross posting.

All the best,

Damian White

Dean of Liberal Arts

The Rhode Island School of Design

Climate Futures, Design and the Just Transition –

A Symposium

Friday Nov 9th 1.30pm-6.30pm

Saturday Nov 10th 9am-3pm.

Location: The Rhode Island School of Design, The RISD Auditorium 7 Canal
Walk, Providence River Greenway, Providence, RI

[log in to unmask],-71.410998,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x89e4451656a05ee3:0x56db1c2ff77bad9b!8m2!3d41.8259464!4d-71.408804" target="_blank">https://www.google.com/maps/place/7+Canal+Walk,+Providence,[log in to unmask],-71.410998,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x89e4451656a05ee3:0x56db1c2ff77bad9b!8m2!3d41.8259464!4d-71.408804

This event is free but to obtain a ticket please sign up here.

Sponsored by:

RISD Liberal Arts Graduate Program in Nature-Culture-Sustainability Studies

RISD Liberal Arts Graduate Program in Global Arts and Culture

Institute at Brown for Environment and Society

Providence College

The North East Just Transitions Research Network,

Critical Design-Critical Futures http://www.cd-cf.org/

At a time when climate politics would seem to be stuck between a state of
“melancholic paralysis” (Wark, 2015) and “passive nihilism” (Connolly,
2016), mobilizations occurring around *just transitions* stand as one of
the few bright spots on the horizon. Discussions of just transitions are at
different stages of development. They come with the usual bundle of issues,
problems, controversies and setbacks. But they also come with potential and
promise. In a bleak intellectual context, where the converging forces of
climate destabilization and authoritarian populism would seem to be
shrinking the ecopolitical imaginary to the propositions that we must
either prepare for the worst or embrace a technocratic ecomodernist project
to decarbonize the status quo, discussions circulating around *just
transitions* are marked by a refreshing level of pragmatic concreteness and
even a degree of hope.

Building on two previous meetings held at Brown and Northeastern University
by the Just Transitions Research Network in 2016 and 2017, this symposium
will bring together a range of scholars and activists to map some of the
different ways in which the search for just *and rapid* post carbon
transitions now animates all manner of interventions--on the part of labor
and climate justice activists, designers, architects, academics and
artists--and is opening up intersectional spaces across movements fighting
for racial and gender justice. We will explore the political, ideological,
aesthetic, cultural and socio-technological barriers that stand in the way
of just transitions in both the Global North and Global South. We will
consider who is visible and who is rendered invisible in different kinds of
transition discourses. This symposium will explore the potential material,
political and ecological impacts of a renewables roll-out. Finally, we will
debate the merits of just transitions premised on frameworks such as green
growth, plenitude, degrowth, design futuring, decoloniality and beyond.

Friday Nov 9th (1.30pm-6.30pm)

Organizers: Damian White (Liberal Arts, RISD), Thea Riofrancos (Political
Science, Providence College), and Timmons Roberts (Sociology, IBES and the
Climate and Development Lab, Brown University).



Framing and Welcome: Damian White

Panel 1:

1.45-3.00 pm

The Labor of Just transitions: Energy Democracy, Trade Unions and Blue
Collar/Pink Collar/Green Collar/White Labor

The concept of the just transition has its roots in the labor movement and
the international labor movement has been one of the major forces pushing
for the adoption of this concept in global climate negotiations. But labor
is under attack across the planet--and just transitions beyond fossil
capitalism will require the broadest possible alliance of social forces to
move us towards a coherent vision of energy democracy. In this session, we
explore the opportunities and the tensions around the call for rapid and
just transitions. Can the struggles for energy democracy be expanded by
thinking more carefully about the alliances that can be built between
blue/white collar, green/pink collar conceptualizations of labor? What
might be the theoretical and practical opportunities that exist between
labor-focused just transitions and movements mobilizing around gendered
labor and racial justice? Can the international labor movement become a
mechanism for thinking about multi-scalar just transitions?

Moderator Jonathan Highfield (Graduate Program Director
Nature-Culture-Sustainability Studies at RISD, President of RISD Faculty

1. Sean Sweeney (Trade Unions for Energy Democracy, Miller Center, CUNY)
“Labor as a Driver of the Just Transition towards Energy Democracy.”

2. Alyssa Battistoni (Yale, Political Science/Jacobin Magazine) “Green
Jobs, Pink Collars: Revaluing Social Reproduction for Just Transitions."
3. Myles Lennon (Yale School of Forestry) “Beyond SolarTopia: Black
Respectability and Blue-Collar Code-switching in the Shadows of Greenwashed

Coffee Break 10 minutes

Panel 2


Design, Creative Labor and the Just Transition

The just transition implies that we decarbonize our energy systems but also
embark on a much broader redesign of our socio-material relations and
landscapes. What role can design play in thinking about just transitions?
What might the designed landscapes of just transitions look like? Who
should be the designers of the just transition? To what extent might a just
transition involve a revaluing of the creative labor and design
intelligences of many different kinds of people beyond the world of
professional designers?

Moderator: Anne Tate (Architecture, RISD).

1. Daniel Aldana Cohen (Sociology, UPenn), Nicholas Pevzner "Gramsci
Landscapes" (Landscape Architecture, UPenn).

2. Namita Dharia (HPSS, RISD) “From Green to Grey: Sustainable
architectures and the work of migrant labor in India.”

3. Elizabeth Dean Hermann (Undergraduate Concentration Coordinator
Nature-Culture-Sustainability Studies, Landscape Architecture RISD)
“Designing Just Transitions: Urbanizations of Displacement, Climate Change
and Natural Disasters in the Surrounds of the Bay of Bengal”

Coffee & Snacks 4.45-5pm

Panel 3


Environmental Activism, Social Justice, and the Just Transition

To what extent does the concept of the just transition open the potential
to build new horizons for activist movements struggling for environmental
justice, housing justice, energy justice and indigenous justice here and
beyond? How do local movements, around particular sites of fossil capital,
energy grids, housing, and transit, scale up and out, and link up as part
of translocal, national, and transnational environmental justice movements?
How do these movements orient to capitalism, the state, electoral politics,
and other movements not explicitly identified as environmentalist?

Moderator:Timmons Roberts (Sociology/IBES/Climate and Development Lab,
Brown), moderator

1.Nicole Fabricant (Anthropology, Towson University) “Environmental Justice
Struggles in Baltimore.”

2.Camilo Viveiros (George Wiley Center) “Struggles for Labor, Economic
Justice and Just Transition in Southern New England”

3. Kai Bosworth (IBES, Brown) "The climate justice movement in the wake of
Standing Rock."

Saturday Nov 10th (9am-3pm)

Panel 4


Designing Just Transitions: Green Design and Global Supply Chains

Rapid and just decarbonization of the global economy must occur as soon as
possible. Critical scholarship has demonstrated that all things remaining
equal, a rapid transition to renewable energy and transportation systems is
going to have significant impacts on land use patterns, ecologies and
communities all along the global supply chain. Yet, it is also clear that
critiques of the material impacts of renewables can take very different
forms and be used to bolster very different kinds of political projects
from environmental justice activism to ecocentric romanticism, from
anti-civilization/neo-primitivist currents, to pro-nuclear ecomodernists
and anti-renewables fossil-fuel advocates. In this panel, we seek to
explore how critical scholarship on global supply chains can engage fully
with hazardous impacts of the big renewables roll out whilst also keeping
the door open for reconfigurations and different modes of deployment that
open up new possibilities for energy democracy.

Moderator: Thea Riofrancos (Providence College)

1. Peter C. Little (Rhode Island College) “Global Copper and Toxic Supply
Chain Labor in Ghana.”

2. Julie Klinger (Pardee School of Global Studies, Boston University) “Rare
Earths, Logistics and Supply Chains.”

3. Dustin Mulvaney (SJSU) “Environmental Justice, Global Supply Chains and
the New Renewables Debate.”

Coffee 10.30-10.45am


10.45am-12 pm

Political Aesthetics and Low Carbon Futures

What might the design aesthetics of a just transition look like? Might it
involve a move beyond eco-nostalgia for “the Nature we have lost” and a
recognition that we are going to have new relations to new socio-natures
and technonatures and designs *with* new natures? How does the struggle for
post and decolonial interventions impact who has voice and how is
represented in the just transition? Might a just transition involve
thinking about futures but in ways that break from older modernist

Moderator:Damian White

1. Ijlal Muzaffar (THAD, RISD) “Just Transitions and Post Colonial

2. Anastasiia Raina (Graphic Design, RISD) “Post-Human Polymythology.”

3. Jesse Goldstein (Sociology, VCU) “Just Transitions beyond, through and
against the Cleantech Surround.”



Panel 6


Just Transitions, Public Ownership, and Platform Cooperatives

Would a just transition in the U.S. require the implementation of green
social democracy? And/or do we need to move forward with new visions of
social ownership, plentitude, and platform co-operatives? In this panel we
will explore and appraise the range of different visions and proposals that
are currently on the table for re-imaging left-green futures.

Moderator: Timmons Roberts

1. Juliet Schor (Sociology, Boston College) “The Sharing Economy, Platform
Co-ops and their Limits.”

2. Johanna Bozuwa (The Next System Project/The Democracy Collaborative)
“Public Ownership and Building the Next Energy System.”

3. Kate Aronoff (John Jay College, CUNY/ *The Intercept*/* In These Times*)
“Green Social Democracy and Beyond?” (Title TBC)

Final Wrap-Up


Long term visions for Just Transitions: Degrowth, Left Ecomodernism,
Ecosocialism, or beyond?

The question of whether a long-term vision for the just transition should
be premised on Left ecomodernism, degrowth, green growth, a critical and
hybrid ecosocialism or some position in between has become ever more
intensely debated across the pages of *Jacobin*, *Monthly Review*, *New
Left Review* and in many other places besides. From debates around
automation/UBI and plenitude to the 100% renewables/green nuclear debates,
from the question of whether sustainable agriculture will involve
sustainable intensification or new agro-ecologies to debates around the
green new deal, the Green Left seems to be increasingly split on key
issues. What is a viable long term vision for a political economy concerned
with the just transition?

Moderator: Thea Riofrancos (Providence College) + Conference Participants

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