Announcing the STEPS Centre's Alumni Association
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Alumni News - July 2015

When we sent out a request for contributions to this letter in May, we didn’t expect to get such an overwhelming response – you have been busy!

Here’s a roundup of some of the exciting things STEPS alumni have been up to recently, plus some opportunities to engage with our ongoing work.

Summer School 2015

summer school

Our fourth Summer School on Pathways to Sustainability brought together another fantastic group, with 42 participants from 31 countries descending on the Institute of Development Studies for two weeks of learning and discussion.

Storify (tweets and images)

Lecture: Mike Hulme on climate change
Mike Hulme, Professor of Climate and Culture at King's College London, gave our annual lecture, explaining his research into why we still disagree about climate change and what can be done to find a way forward.

Mike Hulme’s lecture (YouTube)


News from STEPS alumni

Aviram Sharma and Poonam Pandey presented the poster 'The Changing Terrains of Regulatory Science in Developing Countries: NGOs, Controversies and “Opening up” of Regulatory Governance' at the conference 'Democratizing Technologies: Assessing the Roles of NGOs in Technological Futures'. Aviram also co-authored a paper on water purification regulation which appeared in Current Science (PDF), wrote a STEPS Centre blogpost on the research and received coverage in the Times of India.

Georgina Catacora-Vargas produced a report for the GenØk-Centre for Biosafety, commissioned by the Norwegian Environment Agency, entitled 'Sustainability Assessment of Genetically Modified Herbicide Tolerant Crops. The Case of Intacta RR2Pro Soybean Farming in Brazil in Light to the Norwegian Gene Technology Act'. Since March 2015, Georgina has been acting as the biodiversity and biosafety advisor of the Ministry of Environment and Water in Bolivia.

Thounaojam Somokanta’s paper ‘Geographical Context of Sustainability Transitions: A Case Study of Gnadhinagar Model Solar City in India’ was accepted for the International Sustainability Transitions Conference at Sussex in August. He also published a paper on Sociological understanding of risks: an empirical case study of Tipaimukh dam in Manipur, India in the journal International Journal of Innovation and Sustainable Development.

Andy Safalaoh graduated with a PhD in Science and Technology Studies from the University of Nottingham. In his research, Andy argues that the notion of ‘pro-poor’ technology or innovation has been poorly implemented and its intended benefits remain elusive.

Kathi Welle recently co-authored a CDI practice paper on process tracing as part of her ongoing work on impact evaluation.

Cyriaque Hakizimana and Elsie Onsongo have been setting up a Young African Researchers in Africa network (YARA) which was launched at the UNECA Conference on Land Policy in Africa in November 2014.

Sharlissa Moore successfully defended her dissertation on ‘Visions for Sustainable Energy Transformations: Integrating Power and Politics in the Mediterranean Region’.

Mario Pansera published a paper in March on 'Framing resource-constrained innovation at the ‘bottom of the pyramid’: Insights from an ethnographic case study in rural Bangladesh' in the journal Technological Forecasting & Social Change.

Jamila Haider co-authored a book entitled With Our Own Hands: A celebration of food and life in the Pamir Mountains of Afghanistan and Tajikistan, published by LM publishers in 2015, which includes a foreword by the Prince of Wales.

Farhat Naz’s book The Socio-Cultural Context of Water: Study of a Gujarat Village” was published by Orient Blackswan in 2014. Farhat also co-wrote an ICRAF Guide for Gender Mainstreaming in Agroforestry Research and Development, and is leading two major studies on gender in relation to transformative agricultural research in North West Vietnam and Central Highlands in Vietnam.

Chandni Singh started working as a postdoctoral researcher on the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) project in October 2014, working with a consortium focusing on climate adaptation in semi-arid regions (ASSAR). We are on the lookout for dedicated researchers to join the team in India so maybe you can share the call for postdoc applications with STEPS alumni.

Chrissie Bausch recently published a paper with colleagues in Agriculture and Human Values on pathways for development at the agriculture-urban interface of Phoenix, Arizona, framed by the STEPS pathways approach.


STEPS highlights

Climate change: Our Common Future & COP21

Several STEPS alumni are at the Our Common Future conference in Paris next week, along with STEPS members Adrian Ely, Rob Byrne, David Ockwell and Sam Geall – see our page of resources:

STEPS: COP21, climate change & sustainability

We’ll also be at COP21 in Paris in November-December - email if you’re going & would like to connect with us.

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Global Consortium

Consortium map
Looking forward to the next phase of our work, we’ve launched the Pathways to Sustainability Global Consortium. Regional Sustainability Hubs have been launched China and Africa, with more to follow (India, Latin America) in late 2015 and early 2016.

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New books

New additions to our Pathways to Sustainability book series include:

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Resource Politics

Resource Politics banner

We’re very excited to be convening the Resource Politics 2015 conference at IDS on 7-9 September, with a stellar line-up of speakers. Registration is closed, but the conference website will have material from the conference throughout September, and we’ll be tweeting updates at #resourcepol.

For more news & events please see the STEPS Centre website.


Ways to connect


A LinkedIn group for Association members to share news, publications and events with one another.
Join the LinkedIn group


The Association’s Facebook group offers a more informal way for members to connect.
Join the Facebook group

Annual newsletter

We will send out an annual email alumni newsletter, around June (you can change your subscription using the links below). The newsletter will share news about what STEPS Alumni are doing, so please stay in touch and let us know what you are up to.

Email us

Email Nathan at with your news, questions or comments.

STEPS website

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