by Thorid Wagenblast
In the beginning of July 2023 I travelled across the Netherlands to participate in a summer school course at Radboud University in Nijmegen on transformations and transformative change in the sustainability field. Nearly a year into my PhD this was my first summer school and I was looking forward to deepen my knowledge on transformations and its underlying theories especially from a governance side and to get into contact with fellow PhDs with different backgrounds and from various disciplines.
The course was organized by Maria Kaufmann and Juliette Alenda-Demoutiez and split into two parts. The first part focused on the theories behind transformations / transformative change and governance. This gave me some new keywords and literature that could come in useful in my future research. The other part of the course involved cases of transformative ideas, how they are implemented within the current workings of society and how they try to push existing barriers. This included a talk from United Economy on establishing an alternative economic system among some companies, but also a visit to Bodemzicht, a regenerative farm in the outskirts of Nijmegen.
It was great to also have the time for discussions with the other participants and learn about their views, experiences, and research topics. Nijmegen provided some nice places to meet up after the course hours and the surrounding nature proved to be great for runs and relaxing walks.