Progressive engagements with the challenges and needs of women in an aging society.

On a Friday morning in February, Nanako Nakamura visited the Older Women’s Network in Sydney that she was referred to by one of her Australian grannies.

In 1987, motivated by women members of the Combined Pensioners Association, the Older Women’s Network started their progressive engagements with the challenges and needs of women in an aging society.

Their activities focus on homelessness, wellbeing & connectedness, income security, ageism, violence, and elder abuse, which are issues of exceptional concern for senior women in Australia.

Although they have a clear focus on old women, their activities are relevant to other social groups and underlying issues in modern societies, suggesting insights to deal with everyday life and inevitabilities, such as age and gender.

PhD course on degrowth in Europe: foundations in theory and pathways to practice

The course, which takes place from 11-15 May 2020, will be convened by the Department of Food and Resource Economics of the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

It will engage in the ‘degrowth’ / ‘postgrowth’ discourse through the perspectives of the complementary and established traditions of

  • political ecology,
  • feminist scholarship,
  • ecological economics.

The course will survey theoretical contributions to degrowth from various schools of thought, while emphasizing praxis in multiple social spheres and similarly, scholar-activism. The course unfolds within a frame of Degrowth in Europe, emphasizing what European peoples and states can and must do, starting within our own region.

Expected learning outcomes

The course aims to enable and advance critical engagement with degrowth scholarship and praxis. Learning outcomes include:
1. Knowledge of key arguments and areas of consensus within degrowth studies from the perspective of academic traditions of Political Ecology, Feminist scholarship, and Ecological Economics.
2. Analytical and evaluative skill development in relation to research within the field of degrowth studies, drawing on academic traditions of Ecological Economics, Political Ecology and Feminist scholarship.
3. Competence to critically discuss current and imagine new policies and practices.

Dates and application deadline

The course will take place from 11-15 May 2020.
The application deadline is 1 February 2020.

View the full course description.

Undisciplined Environments goes live

Undisciplined Environments – a platform for political ecology research and activism – has launched today, 1 October 2019

This novel effort is a collaboration between the ENTITLE Collective and the WEGO project, as well as other transnational networks – like the Political Ecology Network (POLLEN).

Undisciplined Environments (UE) aims to become an influential crossroads for activists, researchers, journalists and anyone interested in the mutual imbrications of power, society, culture and ecology. Our commitment is to establish UE as a compelling virtual space to share ideas, stories, concepts, methods and strategies for the elaboration of the knowledges and practices needed to build more emancipatory socionatural worlds.

WEGO members Panagiota KotsilaIlenia Iengo, Irene Leonardelli, Wendy Harcourt and Stefania Barca are on the editorial collective.

 

WEGO lead panel discussion at European Conference on Politics and Gender

WEGO was out in force at the European Conference on Politics and Gender which ran from 3 – 6 July 2019 in Amsterdam.

Wendy Harcourt, Gulay Caglar, Chizu Sato, Constance Dupuis Marlene Gomez and Nanako Nakamura were involved in several panel discussions at the Conference Below are abstracts from some of those panels.

Care and the Commons in Troubling times: confronting whiteness

Led by Constance Dupuis and Wendy Harcourt

Our paper looks at the everyday practice of feminist political ecology as not only practices rooted in one geographical place and culture but also as collective processes that are forming a global community network. We explore how feminist political ecology (FPE) aims to navigate racist structures, gender and class inequalities that determine struggles over rights and resources. Inspired by Donna Haraway’s staying with the trouble, our paper looks at how we confront whiteness in feminist political ecology. We address the ways in which white privilege and colonialism continue to be reproduced and how FPE can engage in critical conversations without centring the white experience.

Analyzing the Politics of the Everyday: A Feminist Political Ecology Perspective

There is ample evidence that neoliberal restructuring has led to precarious living conditions as well as to environmental degradation, both of which negatively affect community well-being worldwide. In response, many alternative initiatives have mushroomed at community level that aim to counter neoliberal policies through changing everyday practices of care and natural resource management. Feminist Political Ecology (FPE) is an approach that analyses these practices by taking into account power relations within different systems of oppression at different scales. With an emphasis on the importance of embodiment, place and scale, FPE aims to unveil the processes through which different actors interact, and the strategies and political mechanisms that community initiatives use to challenge the existing power relations based on exploitation, domination, and conflict. This panel seeks to introduce the theoretical tenets of FPE and to show how FPE contributes to feminist political science. Papers will be analyzing different social movements and initiatives around issues of social and environmental justice, natural resource management and care.

Orientation week

The group meet for the first time. Photo: WEGO

We welcomed our WEGO ESRs at the Coordinating Institute, ISS for their orientation programme from 10 to 14 September 2018. The group was eager to get to know each other, connect, interact and engage in talks and debates about WEGO and FPE. It was a very good bonding experience.

During this week, the ESRs participated in a 3-day writeshop on how to read and write articles. There were plenary discussions and a film on FPE.

In discussion in Noordeinde Palace gardens. Photo: WEGO

We also organised other exciting and thought provoking sessions. Personal reflections on what brought us to WEGO and our interest in FPE were shared.  We talked about our understanding and experiences of our work and activism.

Discussions were held on the fundamental characteristics of FPE. Dowe encounter FPE through gender and development or personal and professional identity questions? Or is it understanding the operation of power and theorising socio-natures? How do issues of gender and women relate to issues of power, knowledge and subjectivity?

Visiting Scheveningen. Photo: WEGO

We looked at how we want the WEGO clusters and network to develop over the next three years and where we fit in. We talked about how we can work together to create an inclusive, participatory and safe environment; how we can position ourselves in the project, create knowledge and engage in critical debates. We explored the processes that we want to foster and engage in, internally and externally. How do we share and engage in cultural communication – using verbal and non-verbal language?  We looked at the art of communication and how FPE manifests in art and science.

Sharing reflections. Photo: WEGO

We ended by sharing reflections on the orientation week and looking forward to continuing the interactions and debates.

 

Photo gallery

Introducing WEGO-ITN

Well-being, Ecology, Gender and cOmmunity – Innovative Training Network

1 January 2018 to 31 January 2022

How is gender linked to environmental problems and developmental issues? How are feminist political ecologists working with local communities around the world? How can their activities inform sustainable development policy debates?

With funding by the European Union the Horizon 2020 Marie Sklodowska – Curie WEGO network made up of 20 institutions will host 15 Ph.D researchers creating the first European ITN on Feminist Political Ecology (FPE).

As the first international feminist political ecology research network of its kind, WEGO-ITN aspires to tackle socio-ecological challenges linked to policy agendas. This innovative and path-breaking project will help local communities to build resilient, equitable and sustainable futures. The goal of WEGO-ITN is to provide research that will demonstrate to policy makers how communities actively sustain and care for their environment and community well-being. Ultimately, WEGO will collectively provide important guides to strategies of resilience and sustainability that are required for meeting the SDGs.

The WEGO-ITN is made up of scholar-activists working on feminist political ecology from ten institutions in six European Union countries: Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom and ten institutions from eight countries for training and secondments: Australia, India, Indonesia, Italy, New Zealand, Portugal, Uruguay and USA.

On March 8th 2018 students, staff and policy makers from around the Netherlands joined international guests from Uruguay, Norway, UK, USA, Germany, France, Italy and Australia in launching this innovative research project.

Introducing WEGO-ITN

Well-being, Ecology, Gender and cOmmunity – Innovative Training Network

1 January 2018 to 31 January 2022

As the first international feminist political ecology research network of its kind, WEGO-ITN aspires to tackle socio-ecological challenges linked to policy agendas. This innovative and path-breaking project will help local communities to build resilient, equitable and sustainable futures. The goal of WEGO-ITN is to provide research that will demonstrate to policy makers how communities actively sustain and care for their environment and community well-being. Ultimately, WEGO will collectively provide important guides to strategies of resilience and sustainability that are required for meeting the SDGs.

The WEGO-ITN is made up of scholar-activists working on feminist political ecology from ten institutions in five European Union countries: Germany, Italy, Sweden, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom and eight institutions from six countries for training and secondments: Australia, India, Indonesia, Italy, Uruguay and USA.