What to Make of Crises: Emerging Methods, Principles, Actions

It is a truism to say that ours is a period of crises. COVID-19 has massively destabilized the world, but the pandemic has not been the only upheaval hanging over us in recent years. The Great Recession of 2008 and its continuing aftermath, and the existential threat of climate change, are other major crises that have contributed to the apocalyptic zeitgeist of the early twenty-first century. The populist wave that has swept the world amid confusion sown by the volatility of neoliberal capitalism and fertilized by mushrooming conspiracy theories has further entrenched the catastrophist mood both in academia and society at large. However, while dysfunctional and oppressive in many ways, a time like this also provides a window of opportunity to rethink and redesign our politics, economy, social relations and relationship with nature. As we emerge from a long period of lockdowns, curfews, and personal losses, there are more questions than ever about the direction that the global community should take in order to advance a fairer, more inclusive, and balanced world. Through interdisciplinary debate and exchange of knowledge, the Fifteenth Global Studies conference will offer the participants plenty of food for thought and point to several ways out of the mess we are in.

Topics we hope to explore include but are not limited to:

  • Lessons from the pandemic, strategies to tackle future global health crises;

  • Responses to rising nationalisms and right-wing populisms;

  • Neoliberalism and its discontents;

  • Rampant social inequality and ways to address it;

  • Volatility of the global financial system;
  • Tax havens and offshore investment;

  • Prospects for global social democracy, global new deal;

  • Principles of an equitable climate change mitigation;

  • North-South relations, underdevelopment, foreign debt, neocolonialism;

  • End of US hegemony and the rise of China;

  • Resistance to racism, sexism, classism and other forms of oppression;

  • The role of social movements.