allotments

Food in the time of Covid-19: how can local action and national coordination work together?

As we approach the end of week 7 of the UK government’s Covid-19 social distancing measures, we have been witnessing a combination of remarkable efforts to sustain the country through this challenging time.  Workers from the National Health Service (supplemented by volunteer responders) and other ‘key workers’ are applauded across the country on a weekly…

Migrant workers queue for food in Delhi

COVID-19, science and governance: lessons from India

by Dinesh Abrol, Ritu Priya and Pravin Kushwaha, South Asia Sustainability Hub The pandemic is global, but the response is local. In India, the first case of the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic was reported on 30 January 2020. Immediately, scientists from the government’s Indian Council of Medical Research, Department of Health Research began working with colleagues…

Five lessons from past global influenza outbreaks for COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic is a rare event in its scale and spread. But in responding to it, people have been looking at lessons from other outbreaks of infectious disease. What are the patterns in the ways that governments and people respond, and why have some widely-known lessons been ignored again and again? One source of…

Men walking in the street carrying large bags of food

The COVID-19 pandemic shows how power produces poverty

by Saurabh Arora and Divya Sharma Responses by governments to the COVID-19 pandemic around the world reveal how poverty is produced by social power. The pandemic points, in particular, to the culpability of power exercised through the state. Consider the Indian government’s top-down lockdown imposed on 24th March 2020. Arguably “the world’s strictest lockdown”, it…

control dials

Modernity Without its Clothes: the pandemic crisis shines a light on futilities of control

With so many self-appointed pundits (like me!) currently locked down with their laptops, the present rush of commentary on how to pivot the coronavirus crisis is hardly surprising. Beyond the general news and commentary, scores of articles are exploding across the media, diagnosing what this global catastrophe means, and prescribing how it can be turned…

Sharing knowledge instead of food: TAPESTRY at the Versova Koli Seafood Festival

The TAPESTRY project is working in three different sites across India, creating opportunities for interactions with communities in marginalised environments to co-produce transformative change in sustainable development. In this blog post, Lalatendu Keshari Das shares news from the project’s Mumbai team, which is conducting action research that examines the ways in which fishing communities adapt…

1970s illustration of two heads facing each other with cut out section showing cogs

Post-normal pandemics: Why COVID-19 requires a new approach to science

Guest post by David Waltner-Toews1, Annibale Biggeri2, Bruna De Marchi3, Silvio Funtowicz3, Mario Giampietro4,5, Martin O’Connor6,7, Jerome R. Ravetz8, Andrea Saltelli3,9 and Jeroen P. van der Sluijs3,10 READ THIS ARTICLE IN SPANISH: See alternative translations published by Democracia Sur and our partners Bioleft. In addressing pandemics, science has never seemed more needed and useful, while…

UK press conference

Science, uncertainty and the COVID-19 response

One of the abiding images of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the UK has been the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, looking nervous and uncomfortable, flanked by his scientific advisors at the regular press conferences. With three white men in suits in a wood-panelled room, the aim presumably was to project a sense of control and…

Claiming space: infrastructure, uncertainty and fisherfolks’ livelihoods in Mumbai

Blog post by Synne Movik and Hans Nicolai Adam (from the TAPESTRY project team) The coastal mega-city of Mumbai is a vibrant bustling hub, home to some 20 million people and a magnet for migrants who flock to the city seeking new opportunities and a better life. The city is a complex conglomerate of contrasts;…

Should we treat the climate crisis like coronavirus?

Why don’t we respond to climate change with the same urgency as coronavirus? The Guardian writer Owen Jones asked this in a new column, making the case that the impacts of climate change are equally present in the world, but with a far higher death toll if you include air pollution, extreme weather and so…