Sustainability transitions in the context of Covid-19: Perspectives from the Global South

‘Transitions in the Global South’ is a growing community of scholars working on sustainability transitions in developing and emerging economies around the world. Our emailing list ( has more than 300 subscribed members and our Global South YouTube channelhas more than 100 subscribers. The Global South Twitter account has more than 600 followers.   Be a part of our LinkedIn network and stay connected.

Here’s an overview of our webinar series held during 2020:

Introductory webinar

Took place on the 3rd of June 2020.  It brought a global audience to Prof. Joyashree Roy, (Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand and Jadavpur University, India) Prof. Mark Swilling (University of Stellenbosch, South Africa) and Prof. Adriana Marotti de Mello, (University of Sao Paulo, Brasil)’s discussion on challenges and prospects of sustainability transition in a post-pandemic world, offering insights from their regional contexts of South Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Over 150 individuals joined the webinar from different parts of the world.

The full recording is available here.

The second webinar in the series,

held on July 15th, 2020, focused on the topic Impact of and Resulting Inequality from COVID-19 in the Global South. Around 100 participants from around the globe discussed inputs from the three panelists below:

  • Impact on human development indicators due to the COVID-19 pandemic in India Dr Keya Chakraborty, faculty member at the Srishti Manipal Institute of Art Design and Technology, Bangalore, India
    • Triaging challenges and locking in opportunities for food security in South Africa: Insights from the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown measures Felix Kwabena Donkor, post-doctoral fellow at the College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences (UNISA), South Africa
    • Inequalities and the COVID-19 outbreak: What can we learn from wholesale food markets in Latin America? Melina A. Galdos-Frixancho, doctoral researcher at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), University of Sussex, United Kingdom

The full recording is available here

The third webinar in the series,

held on August 5th, 2020 focused on Comparative policy analysis and learning from COVID-19 

  • The Covid Response in Latin America: A Comparative Perspective Leonardo Rossatto Queiroz, public policy specialist – São Paulo State Finance and Planning Secretariat, Brazil
    • Policy decision-making in the Covid-19 mindset: opportunities and risks for sustainability in Latin America Paulina Terrazas, Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium (TIPC) and Ingenio, Mexico and Spain
    • The COVID-19 pandemic situation and response in Uganda  Revocatus Twinomuhangi, senior lecturer & coordinator of Makere University Centre for Climate Change Research and Innovations at Makere University, Uganda, and climate change advisor to the Cities and Infrastructure for Growth Programme, Uganda

The full recording is available here.   

The fourth webinar,

held on Sept. 8th, 2020, discussed Changing Social Practices in the Crisis. 

  • Open access and flows of knowledge Dr. Anabel Marin, Research Director at the National Scientific and Technical Research Council, Buenos Aires, Argentina
    • Public Education in a post COVID-19 World Prof. Dr. David Walwyn, Professor in the Graduate School of Technology Management at the University of Pretoria
    • Informal institution during the time of crisis: a hero or a victim? Suci Lestari Yuana, Ph.D. candidate at Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development,Utrecht University

The full recording is available here.

The fifth webinar

took place on Oct. 7, 2020 with a focus on ‘Local experimentation in times of a pandemic’ with  the following presentations: 

  • The e-waste management system in Ghana through the transformative innovation policy lens: The relevance in the wake of COVID-19. Dr. Wilhelmina Quaye (Director of CSIR in Ghana, team leader for Transformation Innovation Policy in e-waste in Ghana. African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD) fellow; Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist for Sustainable Development and Relief Associates (SUDRA)): 
    • COVID-19 as window of opportunity or setback for transition in transport in Metro Manila? Dr. Varsolo Sunio (PhD from Kyoto University, works to accelerate public transport reform in the Philippines).
    • Frugal Innovations in Healthtec to tackle Covid-19. Dr. Maria Lima-Toivannen (Senior scientist, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland), Pedro Figueroa (Co-Founder and President of DiploCientifica), Venkata Gandikota (Co-founder of InnoFrugal).

The recording of the October webinar can be found here.

The sixth webinar

took place on Nov. 4, 2020 with a focus on ‘Informal Economy in times of a pandemic’ and the following presentations:

  • Impacts of COVID-19 in informal settlements. George Kiambuthi Wainaina. Doctoral candidate in sustainability transitions at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Sciences and Utrech University. Master’s degree in water policy (Pan African University) and a bachelor’s degree in water and Environmental Engineering (Egerton University-Kanya)
    • Brazilian workers in the pandemic: multiple realities, multiple bonds. Dr. Ana Carolina de Aguiar Rodrigues. Professor at the school of Economics, administration, and Accounting, University of Sao Paulo (FEA-USP). PhD in psychology at the federal university of Bahia (UFBA).
    • Platform economy and gender inequality: urban poor women and informal jobs during COVID-19 pandemic in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Dr. Amalinda savirani. Associate professor and Head of the department at Department of Politics and Government, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesia.

The recording of the webinar can be found here

The seventh webinar

took place on Dec. 2, 2020 and was an opportunity to do a summary of all the learnings of the series. Its main focus was on ‘Roles of state and public institutions in times of a pandemic’. The following presentations were held:

  • The COVID response in Latin America; making room for post-capitalist socio-technical systems? Dr. Monica Ramos Mejia. Assistant professor at the Economics and Administrative Science School, Pontificia Universidad Javiera, Bogota, Colombia; PhD ON Innovation and Governance for Sustainable Development, University of Twente, The Netherlands; MSc on International Development, University of Bath, England; Bachelor’s on Industrial Engineering, Universidad de los Andes, Colombia.
  • The Governance of COVID-19 responses in South Africa. Dr. Marie Blanche Ting. PhD and Associate Research Fellow at the Science policy Research Unit (SPRU), University of Sussex (US), UK; Master degree in Climate Change and Development from the institute of Development Studies (IDS), U.K. as a Mandela-Sussex Scholar; Master in applied science in Chemical Engineering AT THE University OF Cape Town (UCT)

The recording of the final webinar can be found here.


About Julius Wesche

Writing about coalition buliding in the German heat Transition | Member of the STRN steering group | PhD candidate at @UtrechtUni | Work at @FraunhoferISI | Organizer at the NEST |

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