About Andy Stirling

Co-director

Andy trained in astrophysics, archaeology and anthropology, later working for Greenpeace International before research in technology policy. He focuses especially on questions over uncertainty, participation, diversity and sustainability in the governance of science and innovation.

All posts by Andy

Escaping the frames of war

The world is now witnessing yet one further bout in a perennial tragedy. As so often before, organised violence is being used as an instrument of politics. This is no less obscene for being so familiar. And the pathology is all the more distressing, for being so pervasive. A diversity of political perspectives are implicated….

murmuration

Opening up democratic politics for sustainable development: reflections from STEPS America Latina

The event that launched STEPS América Latina earlier this month, ‘Opening up the development agenda’, was a great workshop. It’s rare for a meeting of this kind to be so diverse yet so coherent. And this is especially so, on a topic as challenging as the transforming of development. Despite many differences in terms of…

‘Reigning back’ the Anthropocene is hard – but Earth’s worth it

I am very grateful to Laura Pereira, Victor Galaz and Johan Rockström for taking precious time to respond to the points I raise in my earlier blog. It is a huge privilege to benefit from such thoughtful and substantive reflections. This is all the more the case, since we agree that the issues at stake…

Time to rei(g)n back the Anthropocene?

I was very lucky to be able to participate in last week’s Stockholm Resilience Centre conference on ‘Transformations 2015: People and Planet in the Anthropocene‘. Involving a dynamic and highly policy-influential global interdisciplinary community, this was a large, friendly and very interactive meeting. It more-than-fully lived up to the very high standards set by earlier…

Are Common Wealth Trusts the way forward for a sustainable and equitable future?

STEPS co-director Andy Stirling responds to a recent article on the Great Transition Initiative website by Peter Barnes, which makes the case for Common Wealth Trusts as a way of reducing the inequality and destruction of nature that result from contemporary capitalism, while keeping the benefits that markets provide. Peter Barnes is absolutely right to…

Submerged origins of UK nuclear lock-in?

By Andy Stirling, STEPS Co-Director and Phil Johnstone, Research Fellow at SPRU – Science Policy Research Unit Many legitimately contrasting views are possible on the pros and cons of nuclear power. But when seen in a global context, successive UK Governments are quite striking in their tendencies to adopt partisan positions. Growing evidence is persistently…

New pathways: learning from China’s ‘greenization’

There is much talk of ‘Rising Powers’ in contemporary worldwide development debates. But my experience is mainly in ‘Failing Powers’. So I will focus my summary on some of the key things I have learned in this conference on Pathways to Sustainability in a Changing China conference, coordinated by Beijing Normal University School of Social Development…

From Knowledge Economy to Innovation Democracy

The ESRC STEPS Centre’s Co-Director Professor Andy Stirling recently gave a keynote speech at the European Commission’s ‘FTA 2014: future oriented technology analysis’ conference. Prof. Stirling’s address, From Knowledge Economy to Innovation Democracy: collective action in the shaping of scientific and technological futures, was based on his extensive work on technocratic transitions and opening up…

Andy Stirling at events on well-being and research methods

STEPS director Andy Stirling was a speaker at “Let’s Talk Happiness – beyond GDP”, a conference organised by the Various Interests Group of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) last week. The event assessed the state of affairs, democratic challenges and political commitment to developing indicators on well-being and social progress in the context…