Learning from the past - NGOs at the crossroads
The workshop brings together social scientists who share a common interest in environmental NGOs. Since the economic crisis of 2008 and during the present age of austerity, the priority given to environmental issues in the agenda of parties and governments has decreased in Europe. Preparations for the 2009 Conference (COP-15) in Copenhagen raised environmental issues to their highest level of saliency. It caused concerns among environmental NGOs over the relevance of international negotiations as a response to environmental problems. The failure to adopt any strong agreements in response to major global environmental challenges at the 2012 Rio Conference – or at Lima in 2014 – has caused further debates about internal structure, advocacy strategies and/or priorities within the networks of environmental NGOs. Are these recent political and economic developments at the global level leading to a green backlash?
The workshop addresses the most recent trends affecting environmental NGOs as well as the strategies characterising earlier periods of expansion. While favouring comparison both over time and between organisations, the workshop welcomes a diversity of approaches.
Thursday 18 June 12:00 - 17:30 pm
12:00 Welcome and introduction
12:30 - 14:00 - Lunch
14:00 - 17:00 - Successes and failures
Session 1. Climate change
Chair : Johannes Paulman (IEG, Leibniz/ St Antony's college, Oxford)
Neil Carter (Department of Politics, University of York, UK) and Mike Childs (Friends of the Earth), The Big Ask: an exercise in effective policy entrepreneurship
Cassandra Star (Flinders University, Australia) Environmental NGOs’ advocacy in times of crisis: unravelling failures ?
Session 2. Reflexivity and effectiveness
Chair : Chris Rootes (Kent University, UK)
Michael Hammer (INTRAC, UK): Decentralise, flatten, localise, empower? Directions and contradictions in transformation of INGO organisational governance
Laurent Mermet and Fanny Guillet, (AgroParisTech, France) Acting effectively for biodiversity: a strategic Framework for environmental NGOs
Friday 19 June 9:30 - 17:00
9:30 - 12:30am - Time(s) of changes
Session 3. Green movements
Chair : William Beinart (University of Oxford, UK)
Stefan Bargheer, (University of California at Los Angeles, US), Apocalypse Adjourned: Strategies and Goals of German Environmentalism after the Nuclear Energy Phase-Out
Peter Christoff, (University of Melbourne, Australia), The Death of Australian Environmentalism?
Session 4. Environmental organisations
Chair : Jenny Pickerill (University of Sheffield, UK)
Brian Doherty, (Keele University, UK) Modus vivendi, organisational culture and sustaining solidarity in Friends of the Earth International
Nathalie Berny, (Maison française d'Oxford, Centre Emile Durkheim, France), French environmental NGOs: new wine in old bottles?
13:30 - 17:30 pm - Strategies in comparison
Session 5. Choices of audiences and modes of action
Chair : Peter Vis (European Commission, / St Antony's college, Oxford)
Sabine Lang, (University of Washington, US), Lance Bennett, (University of Washington, US), Alexandra Segerberg, (Stockholm University, Sweden), Digital Media and the Organization of Advocacy: Comparing Legitimacy and Public Engagement in National and EU-Level Environment and Fair Trade NGOs
Martin Goodman, (University of Hull, UK) The Migration of Public Interest Environmental Law from the USA to Europe
Session 6. Entrepreneurs, activists and the grassroots
Chair : Graeme Hayes (Aston University, UK)
Peter Harper, (University of Bath, UK), Songs of Experience. Four decades of successes, failures, and change at the Centre For Alternative Technology
Geoffrey Pleyers, (FNRS- Université de Louvain, Belgium), Climate justice NGOs at a crossroad: Institutional civil society with an eye on the grassroots
Location: Radcliffe Humanities Building, Seminar Room.
This is a joint event of the Maison française d'Oxford and The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities.
For more information, please contact the convenors : firstname.lastname@example.org; C.A.Rootes@kent.ac.uk
Contact name: Hannah Penny
Contact email: email@example.com
Audience: Open to all
Environmental Humanities, TORCH Programmes