The next STEPS Summer School on Pathways to Sustainability will take place on 11-22 May 2020.
Applications for the Summer School will be open in October 2019.
About the Summer School
The Summer School is a two-week immersive course on theories and practical approaches to sustainability, through creative, interactive and participatory learning.
Applications are invited from highly motivated doctoral and postdoctoral researchers, working in fields around development studies, science and technology studies, innovation and policy studies, and with an interest in ideas and practice of transformations, uncertainty, political ecology, natural resources, and methodologies for sustainability.
Participants will explore the theme of pathways to sustainability through a mixture of workshops, lectures, outdoor events and focused interaction with STEPS Centre members. The Summer School takes place on the University of Sussex campus, near Brighton, UK, where STEPS is co-hosted by the Institute of Development Studies and the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU).
Free online course: Pathways to Sustainability
Our STEPS Learning website includes a free online course on Pathways to Sustainability, inspired by the Summer School. It includes selected reading lists, plus video lectures and questions to guide study.
“A great experience to open up your ways of thinking, grow as a researcher and have fantastic conversations about research, life and everything in between.” 2018 participant
“A great way to expand your network as a PhD student and find like-minded people who I hope to keep in touch with and work with the future.” 2017 participant
“I can honestly say it has been the best 2 weeks of the PhD so far. To be in such an amazing, supportive and inspiring group has been fantastic” 2016 participant
“Wonderful opportunity. A fantastic group of participants, and the very knowledgable faculty treated us as colleagues on this journey towards sustainable pathways together.” 2014 participant
“Beautiful to have 24 nations in the same room thinking and discussing global to local issues!” 2013 participant
“I liked the fact that it really was an open space in which everyone’s (teachers AND students) ideas and experiences could be shared and critically engaged with.” 2012 participant
For a participant’s view of the Summer School, read Winifredo Dagli’s blog post about the course in 2018.
How it works
For common questions on the Summer School, view the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).
The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) is the main venue. IDS is on the edge of the Sussex University campus, set in the middle of rolling countryside but with good transport links to Brighton.
The programme includes lectures and discussions, ‘walkshops’ – longer discussions held on walks through the surrounding area – and social events. The Summer School also includes some time in smaller groups, where participants get to reflect and discuss their own work, led and mentored by members of the STEPS Centre.
All participants are expected to agree with the statement on harassment and discrimination. The Institute of Development Studies Code of Conduct also applies.
Materials from past summer schools
Each year, the Summer School includes a public lecture open to a wider audience.
- Video: Derek Wall: What would Elinor do (about climate change)? (2019)
- Video: Kate Raworth: Economics as if we wanted to survive the 21st Century (2018)
- Video/slides: Achim Steiner: Doomed to fail or bound to succeed? Sustainable Development and the Green Economy Agenda – Revisited (2017)
- Video: Prof Harriet Bulkeley: Can we govern the climate? (2016)
- Video: Prof Mike Hulme on climate change arguments and culture (2015)
- Video/audio/slides: Prof Mariana Mazzucato: The Green Entrepreneurial State (2014)
- Video: Prof Michael Jacobs: capitalism, carbon and climate change | Slides (2013)
- Video: Public debate on fuel poverty, climate change and social justice (2013)
- Video: Prof Tim Jackson: the future of the green economy (2012)
- Audio: Public debate on Rio+20 & collective action (2012)
Summer school 2018
SUMMER SCHOOL 2017
Summer School 2016
Summer School 2015
- Video: Feedback from IDRC-funded participants
- Video: Feedback from participants
- 2015 Summer School Storify.
- Photo gallery (Flickr)