Speaker: Professor Johan Schot
Director, Science Policy Research Unit, School of Business, Management and Economics, University of Sussex UK
Moderator: Professor Lan XUE
Dean of School of Public Policy and Management at Tsinghua University
Discussant: Shulin GU
Reseacher of Institute of Policy and Management, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Time：June 21, Tuesday, 15：30-17：00
Venue：Room 321, School of Public Policy and Management, Tsinghua University
Innovative social science thinking is needed to address the current interconnected social, economic and ecological challenges facing humanity. It is clear that the current paradigm of industrial mass production and individualized mass consumption based on intensive use of fossil fuels and a production of a massive amount of waste cannot be extended to all of the world's population without exceeding Earth's planetary boundaries. There is a second challenge, however. Despite continuing economic growth in many parts of the world, many people still live in poverty. Rising inequalities are resulting in highly uneven distribution of the benefits and costs of growth and development.
Many international organizations, business-linked foundations and official government advisors have responded to this double challenge of environmental change and social inequality. The United Nations (2015) has formulated 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), calling for revolutionary greener production, increased social justice, fairer distribution of welfare, sustainable consumption patterns and new ways of producing economic growth. However, it remains an open question how these goals are to be achieved.
In this presentation we assume that to deliver on the 17 SDGs and similar aims will require a Deep Transition, similar in scale and complexity to that which gave rise to modern industrial systems. Deep Transition is defined as a series of connected individual transitions in a similar direction in a wide range of socio-technical systems which provide food, energy, water, mobility, communication, materials and healthcare. The presentation will provide a conceptualization and interpretation of the emerging Deep Transition. It will present a new conceptual framework able to account for major ruptures as well as underlying continuities in the evolution of socio-technical systems, and will discuss implications for innovation and innovation policy introducing three frames: R&D, National System of Innovation and Transformative change responding to three types of failures: market failure, system failures and needs failure.
Prof. Johan Schot joined the University of Sussex as the Director of SPRU – Science Policy Research Unit in January 2014. He is a Professor in the History of Technology and Sustainability Transitions Studies. He is also director of the Foundation for the History of Technology in Eindhoven. His research focuses on: 1) The origins, nature and outcomes of radical and long term sociotechnical change, in particular sustainability transitions; 2) The history and governance of transnational infrastructures, in particular the role of experts; 3) The development of a new transnational European history through the lens of technology, including wider issues of technocracy and democracy. Prior to coming to Sussex, he held academic posts at the Eindhoven University of Technology and University of Twente, Netherlands.
In 2009, Johan Schot was elected to the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) for the genuine interdisciplinarity of his work. He is series editor (with PhilScranton) of the prestigious Making Europe. Technology and Transformations Book Series with Palgrave (see www.makingeurope.eu ), the path breaking Routledge Studies in Sustainability Transitions http://www.routledge.com/books/series/RSST/ and the Technology and European History book series with Amsterdam University Press/Chicago University Press, see http://press.uchicago.edu/ucp/books/series/AUP-TEH.html. He is also the initiator and founder of a number of influential national, European and global research programmes and networks. In 2015 he won the prestigious Leonardo da Vinci medal of the Society for the History of Technology for his contributions to the field.