Pathways for an Inclusive and Sustainable Recovery

13th Biennial Conference of the Canadian Society for Ecological Economics (CANSEE)

University of Victoria, Victoria, BC
May 23 – May 26, 2021

Submission Details

Submissions will be accepted under the six sub-themes and five presentation / intervention formats, listed below.

Deadline: December 18, 2020

Submission Requirements: Review presentation formats below and respective submission requirements.
Acceptance Criteria:

  • Significance, originality and relevance to the overall theme.
  • Capability of the abstract to directly enhance the discourse within one specific sub-theme at either a theoretical or practical level. 
  • Clarity, concision and focus.

Submit now: Submit online at: [link to conference submission here]

Conference and Theme Overview

It is increasingly clear that the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed systemic vulnerabilities in our current economic structures. These vulnerabilities have exacerbated social inequalities, health, and climate crises, and exposed how deeply interlinked our social, environmental, and economic systems are. It is with this realization that we must reimagine the structures that failed us with increased intensity, urgency and creativity, if we are to catalyze solutions for a sustainable recovery. We recognize that governments, institutions, and civil society will each play critical roles in shaping this transition. This conference uses an ecological economics lens to engage with these various groups, to inform workable, effective, and inclusive public policy solutions that address the ecological challenges our society faces. We also recognize that these solutions are inherently complex, like the system they work in. We encourage members to effect transformative policy that address social and ecological inequalities across regions and between generations.

Ecological economics is a heterodox school of economic thought that provides insight into the social, ecological, economic, and political critiques of current neo-classical economic strutuctures. Consequently, this school of thought benefits greatly from the exchange of knowledge across multiple disciplines, including but not limited to history, sociology, political science, and management. We encourage all relevant stakeholders to explore alternative modes of ‘economy.’ To accomplish this, partnerships between the academy, policy-makers, NGOs, and businesses will be emphasized, catalyzing a public conversation that links deep theoretical approaches with active policy change and community practice. We warmly welcome participation from activist groups, non-profit organizations, industry representatives and government agencies to enhance the conference content with real-world challenges and applications. We care about representing diverse voices and encourage submissions from minorities and marginalized groups. Academics are expected to contribute original research that augments the core of the debate.


Post-Pandemic Ecological Transition

The last year has triggered massive social upheaval, exposing the deep injustices that plague our society in pursuit of private consumption and profit. Calls for a just transition, toward a more socially and ecologically resilient global order are common and growing louder. This sub-theme imagines what a just ecological and resilient recovery may look like and how power relations are key to better understanding and solving the crisis. We look to collaborating (among others) with history, anthropology, psychology, sociology, and political ecology.

Inclusive Ecological Economics 

Socio-ecological problems are not merely technical, but involve differential power relations between humans, species, and generations. Asymmetric relations of power have exacerbated social inequalities within and between generations, disproportionately affecting disadvantaged, racialized, and Indigenous peoples. This sub-theme encourages indigenous-led and minority-led discourse around the challenges of balancing development and a healthy environment and the opportunities of a regenerative ethos in economic policy.

Environmental Justice

Increasingly the fight for climate justice is moving into the courts. This global trend raises a host of interesting questions including the role of courts when grappling with complex scientific evidence, whether and to what extent in such cases courts should defer to other branches of government, and what “climate justice” means within rights protection regimes that have so far been reluctant to recognize “positive” entitlements. This sub-theme explores how movements around the world are advancing a radical climate and environmental justice agenda.

Climate Interventions

The pandemic has exposed failures in our economic system – failures that are expected to worsen with inaction on climate change. The climate crisis has already demonstrated the foolhardiness of undercompensating the sustaining services, which maintain and replenish human societies and ecosystems that are the vital foundation of sustainable, resilient life on Earth. This sub-theme explores the disconnect between policy tools and the climate crisis, including the challenging trade-offs between policy effectiveness, efficiency, and socio-political acceptance.

Sustainable Exchange

Payments for ecosystem services have become a leading tool to advance conservation and sustainability by offering economic incentives to protect the environment. Money, exchange and investment plays a critical role in contemporary economic institutions and will be a driving force for the low-carbon transition. This sub-theme analyzes financial institutions, sustainable commerce, money creation, alternative currencies, ontological understandings of money and how an ecological economy might handle pluralist conceptualizations of ‘value.’

Feminist and Queer Ecologies

Our global crisis has stemmed from economic systems of exploitation; a system with links between heterosexual, androcentric histories and ecological destruction. Queer and feminist theories contribute to studies of normalization, naturalization, establishment of homes, alternative family formations, and the rejection of traditional economies that thrive on consumerism and the unquestioned dominance of the natural world. This sub-theme encourages speakers to question fundamental constructions of “naturalness.”

Systems Complexity and Co-evolution

There is an ongoing overlap in research approach between systems science and ecological economics, necessitating exploration of spatial and temporal dynamics of ecological and social transitions over time. This sub-theme poses questions about the relationships between growing energy and material throughput and extending empathic circles, equality, and social justice. We seek to explore cascading policy and non-policy effects on the coevolution of social, political, and biophysical systems using historical evidence as well as forecasting tools.

Types of Presentations

Traditional Parallel Presentations

Speak on your expertise for 15 minutes followed by 5 minutes of Q&A on a panel of 4-5 presenters in traditional parallel presentation sessions. Your audience will be limited to those who choose to attend you session in a set of 4-8 parallel sessions.

To Submit: Prepare a 400-word abstract detailing your presentation and a 100-word summary for the program. Identify the sub-theme(s) your work fits under.

Asynchronous sessions

Pre-record your 10-minute presentation in advance, for viewing and comment by other conference participants at any time during the conference. This formal allows for a virtual exchange of ideas, comments, and thoughts about submitted presentations.

To Submit: Prepare a 400-word abstract detailing your presentation and a 100-word summary for the program. Identify the sub-theme(s) your work fits under.

Flash Talks

Condense your work into a 5-minute pitch to the entire conference audience, followed by 30-minute moderated break-out sessions where you and interested peers can discuss and debate details further. This session allows the most amount of time for presenters to disseminate their work at the conference.

To Submit: Prepare a 250-word abstract detailing your pitch and a 100-word summary for the program. Identify the sub-theme(s) your work fits under.

Special Sessions

Workshops and demonstrations dedicated to specific topics that are fully designed and organized by the submitting participants. Special sessions can run for 60, 90, or 120-minute segments.

To Submit: Prepare a 600-word abstract detailing your session including your preferred time frame, full list of leading participants, and expected outcomes. Identify the sub-theme(s) your work fits under and provide a 100-word summary for the program.

Creative Interventions

Creative presentations and interventions related to ecological economics and community-building are welcome. Expressions can be presented in any one of the above structures or any other novel process. Creativity in different types of expression will be rewarded. Specify in the proposal how you imagine the intervention being integrated into the conference.

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