Three Transformative Knowledge Networks launched by ISSC

Three “Transformative Knowledge Networks” will be funded as part of the innovative Transformations to Sustainability Programme, the International Social Science Council (ISSC) announced today. The programme aims to harness the potential of the social sciences to contribute to solving some of the world’s most urgent sustainability challenges by means of a better understanding of the processes of social transformation.

“We need the social sciences in order to address the challenges of global change. Social scientists bring a wealth of knowledge about processes of social transformation that will be critical to dealing with issues of environmental change and sustainability. This programme is pioneering holistic research approaches to sustainability and social justice. It represents a major contribution to the agenda of the Future Earth Programme,” said ISSC President and Programme Steering Committee Chair Alberto Martinelli.

Three networks have been selected for funding following an open call for proposals which generated a tremendous response from researchers all around the world. They will carry out comparative solutions-oriented research projects on needs and opportunities for social transformation in specific locations in view of the enormous challenges posed by environmental change. Each network involves local research partners in at least three countries, including low- and lower-middle income countries, with a view to building capacity for international research cooperation globally. The networks are led by social scientists and mobilize researchers from other scientific domains as well as relevant stakeholders such as civil society organisations, NGOs, the media and policy makers.

“This Programme aims to ensure that the knowledge produced actually gets used to make a difference,” said Mathieu Denis, Executive Director of the ISSC. “We are therefore developing a Global Knowledge Trust – an openly accessible repository of knowledge on social transformations towards sustainability, drawing on the expertise of the extended community of researchers involved in each network”.

Three selected Transformative Knowledge Networks will each receive €850,000 over three years through the support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) for the Transformations to Sustainability Programme. They are:

In addition to the three funded networks, other sources of funding are being sought to support a further five short-listed proposals.

Download the full press release.