Heide Hackmann steps down as head of ISSC
After 8 years leading the social sciences at the helm of the ISSC, Heide Hackmann stepped down this month to take up the position of Executive Director at the International Science Council (ICSU).
Heide Hackmann, during her time at the ISSC, was instrumental in giving a much larger voice, role, and importance to the social sciences globally. Under her leadership, the ISSC was a founding member of the International Science and Technology Alliance for Global Sustainability that established Future Earth (the new 10-year research framework on global environmental change), and which has recently launched a new multi-year programme, Transformations to Sustainability, focusing on bringing the social sciences into solution spaces.
On behalf of all of us here at the secretariat, our Executive Committee and all our members, we wish her nothing but the best in her new position.
172 days until World Social Science Forum in Durban
The forum preparations are picking up momentum and the African consortium is working hard to make the first forum held on African soil a memorable one.
In Nairobi, Kenya from 24 to 26 February, 11 ministers pledged their support for the next World Social Science Forum. Eleven ministers from the eastern Africa region concluded their discussions on the topic of global justice with a call for the "active participation" of policy-makers and researchers from the region in the Forum, which is taking place in Durban, South Africa, from 13-16 September.
"Africa has to construct its own distinct voice and theoretical paradigms to address Africa social transformations, accompany and empower the bearers of progress and positive change through knowledge and help to open up the policy space through participation."
Said Professor Pierre Sané, a patron of the forum.
You can read more declarations from other patrons of the forum here
, including George Monbiot and Professor Thandika Mkandawire.
Online submissions for Transformations to Sustainability
In January, the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) hosted an International Joint Symposium on Transformations to Sustainability at the United Nations University in Tokyo. The event was also supported by the Science Council of Japan.
The ISSC’s new long-term vision to address today’s great challenges of global environmental change and sustainability via enduring social transformations and social change is in the final stages of the call for proposals. And the JST is supporting the programme with dedicated funding for Japan-based researchers.
Deadline for proposals is March 31
Book of Blogs on Sustainable Urbanisation
Participants of last year's World Social Science Fellows seminar on Sustainable Urbanisation have come together to produce a "book of blogs". The project, “Dialogues of sustainable urbanisation: Social science research and transitions to urban contexts”, aims to bring their work together quickly in an accessible format to showcase the latest social science research and thinking on sustainable urbanisation.
It will be a collection of short blog posts crowdsourced by, and from, our networks of social scientists working on sustainable urbanisation issues. The book will be self-published as an e-book and launched in the summer of this year.
If you think you have something to contribute, please get in touch
Meeting of the ISSC Executive Committee
On the 12th and 13th March, members of the ISSC Executive Committee met in Paris. The meeting was a chance to update members on the recent activities of the secretariat, and do come together to make decisions on future directions.
One key decision was to formally approve the membership application of The Research Council, Oman