Reducing Academic Flight Symposium

participants in the room – twice as many again out there online

The Reducing Academic Flight workshop surpassed expectations by a long way. We knew we had a good bunch of speakers, but the range of talks was broader, and more apposite than could be anticipated. They ranged from hitting hard with the fundamental ethical trouble of flight – as banal evil (Johan Gardebo), indirect but real violence (Joseph Nevins) and key to making the climate emergency (Kim Nicholas) – through theoretically informed and deeply reflective understandings of the embeddedness of flying to academic practice (James Faulconbridge, Andrew Glover), the difference that Geography makes to the costs of cutting flying (Debbie Hopkins) and inescapable value of direct interpersonal engagement (Monica Buscher) to findings from surveys into climate scientists flight (Stuart Capstick), details of experiments in doing academia differently (Renee Timmers) and of institutional efforts to make a difference (Sion Pickering ). Contrasts were strong but they worked together to effectively unpick the vexed issue of academic flight and the challenges and opportunities facing measures to radically reduce air travel dependence in academia.

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Energy in the city summer school


CaptureTalking once again on understanding the relations between infrastructural change, changes to daily life, and their consequences for energy demand, this time as one of the contributors to the ‘Energy in the City’ Summer School at Leeds University. Working through the argument of a journal article recently back from review, and getting participants’ input into it, really helped push along my thinking on ‘infrastructuration’.  A full report of the event is here. Continue reading “Energy in the city summer school”

Inaugurating village water scheme in Nepal

jb mw turning the tapWith Julie Balen from Scharr, I was guest of honour at the inauguration of a new water scheme in Pokharigaun village in Dhading District, Nepal. The village gave a wonderful welcome to University of Sheffield students and staff to the official inauguration of a water scheme, which is saving the people there hours of work carrying water up the hill from the spring. Julie and I, returning to Dhading for the first time since 2015 to staff the Masters Nepal field class, were representing the University of Sheffield Friends of Nepal group. The water scheme was funded by a donation to Focus Nepal by the group, from funds raised by the group of students and staff immediately following the devastating 2015 earthquake. Continue reading “Inaugurating village water scheme in Nepal”