We are happy to announce our second international NISANSA conference, in collaboration with NISANSA, ARUA and TSITICA:
'Pathways of Change in the social response to climate change in unequal societies in Sub-Saharan Africa and Northern South America'

*** Save the date – this transdisciplinary collaborative forum will take place in Cape Town, South Africa March 13th and 14th, 2024 ***

What is the Conference about?

This transdisciplinary forum aims to advance the understanding of pathways of change in social responses to climate change. Societies in Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America are not only highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change but also among the most multi-dimensionally unequal. Social responses to climate change are as diverse as the two regions themselves. Yet they share elements of innovation that can provide a better understanding of transformative change in climate resilient development pathways.


The forum invites abstracts, session and poster submissions from researchers and practitioners at all career stages to understand pathways of change in Southern Africa and Latin America. The concept of pathways will guide the two days of engagement between diverse participants from academia, and public and private sectors with a strong focus on the building blocks of innovation, transformation, and positive change. The meeting format caters for in-person exchanges with partial online streaming at the conference facilities at Cape Town’s Graduate Business School in South Africa.


Guiding questions for the conference are:


·       How do societies respond to climate change in unequal societies in the Global South?

·       How do different perceptions and societal actors shape social responses to climate change?

·       How do societal actors change rules and build innovative institutions in the governance of climate change?

·       How can existing pathways be inclusively transformed towards a good life and sustainable livelihoods for all?

·   How can common approaches such as “nature-based solutions”, “integrated water management”, and “just transitions” contribute to changing pathways?



If your work focuses on these questions, consider joining the forum to share your experiences and knowledge either through a poster, active participation or a dedicated session.

If your our work focuses on these questions, consider joining the forum to share your experiences and knowledge either
through a poster, active participation or a dedicated session.

Kindly express your interest for attendance right here




Important Dates:


  • Poster proposal and contrubutions submission by 02 February 2024 (Extended Deadline)
  • Notification of acceptance by 07 of February 2024
  • Session proposals can be submitted to LXXMOR001@myuct.ac.za

please note, some of the session are streamed via zoom. Please click that “join in” button

Wednesday, 13th of March

08:30 ‐ 09:00  am Arrival and Registration

09:00 ‐ 10:30 Session 1: Opening Plenary: Innovation, knowledge and theory of change rooftop

  • Pathways of Change – the role of collaboration in science and transformative innovation in a climate crises rooftop
    Scene setting inputs:
    Simone Strambach, Philipps University of Marburg
    Erika Mbula, University of Johannesburg

    facilitation: Ruth Beukmann

10:30 ‐ 11:00  Health Break

11:00 ‐ 12:30 Session 2: El buen vivir – climate change and human well-being rooftop

  • Pathways of livelihoods and a “good life” in a climate crisis in unequal societies
    David Lam, University of Michigan, Representatives of the Department of Forestry,
    Fisheries and Environment South Africa
    Belynda Petrie, One World
    Fabio Andreas Dias Pabon, African Centre for Inequality Research


    Facilitation: Ruth Beukman

12:30 ‐ 1:00 pm  Lunch

1:00 ‐ 03:00 pm Parallel rooftop


01:00 ‐ 03:00 pm Session 4 Earth breakaway


03:00 ‐ 03:30 pm  Health break

03:30 ‐ 05:00 pm Session 5 Energy rooftop


05:00 ‐ 06:00 pm Session 6 Reflection rooftop

  • Linking unconnected actors, sectors and scales in pathways of change
    Wrap up – panelists and rapporteurs

06:15 ‐ 06:45 pm Documentary film screening rooftop


07:00 ‐ open end Conference Dinner

Thursday, 14th of March

08:00 ‐ 08:30  am Arrival and Registration

08:30 ‐ 09:00 Plenary rooftop

  • Welcome and introduction to the second conference day:
    How to change towards pathways?

    Ruth Beukmann, WWF


09:00 ‐ 10:30 Parallel Sessions: Participation and discourses

  • Session 8: Pathways of Change: Vote and political representation in climate governance in unequal societies rooftop
    Evan Lieberman, MIT Deparment of Political Science
    Malebo Seleetse, DFFE
    Britta Rennkamp, University of Cape Town
    Mpfunzeni Tshindane, Western Cape Government

10:30 ‐ 11:00 pm  Health break

11:00 ‐ 12:30 Parallel Sessions: Participation and discourses

  • Session 9: Facilitating innovations, institutional and behavioural change rooftop

    Meed Mbidzo, Namibian University of Science and Technology (NUST)
    Bjoern Vollan, Philipps-University of Marburg
    Thomas Falk, Philipps-University of Marburg
    Martine Visser, EPRU, University of Cape Town


12:30 ‐ 01:30 pm  Lunch

01:30 ‐ 02:30 Parallel Sessions: Participation and discourses

  • Session 11: Interactive poster presentations, discussion and vote rooftop

    Marieke Norton


02:30 ‐ 04:00 Facilitated thematic hubs

  • Hub 1: The role of Universities (HEIs) to foster coail innovation and sustainability transformation –
    Places, Processes and Pathways 

    Simone Strambach, Philipps-University of Marburg

    Facilitation: Ruth Beukmann, WWF

  • Hub 2: Pathways of Change in Science Communication – Beyond well-trodden paths breakaway
    Janek Riedel, Philipps-University of Marburg
    Sara Luettich, University of Giessen


    Facilitation: Lavinia Perumal, University of Cape Town


04:00 ‐ 04:30 pm  Health break

04:30 ‐ 05:00 pm Closing Session


Friday, 15th of March

Please RSVP for walk and lunch to yonela.arosi@uct.ac.za

If you wish to be part of the synthesis working group, please contact britta.rennkamp@uct.ac.za
and join the meeting at 11:30 am.

Meet at Sarah Baartmann Steps, Upper Campus, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch

09:30 ‐ 11:00 am (Un)sustainable Campus Tour, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch

Tour guided by:
Marieke Norton, African Climate and Development Initiative (ACDI)
Manfred Braune, Sustainability Manager, University of Cape Town

(Disclaimer: this walk and talk tour involves climbing stairs and unsteady surfaces, wear solid footwear, note that some of the terrain is not wheelchair friendly, use sun protection and bring water)


11:00 ‐ 11:30 am  Break

11:30 ‐ 01:00 pm Synthesis working group meeting: reflection and experience sharing and ways forward

location: ACDI Seminar Room, Geological Sciences, Building 6th floor


01:00 – end          Lunch and End of Conference

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