Participants

Participants

AFRICA and diaspora

David Fig, South Africa. David Fig is a South African environmental sociologist, political economist, and activist based in Johannesburg. He holds a PhD from the London School of Economics, and specialises in questions of energy,  agro-ecology, biodiversity, South-South relations and corporate behaviour.  David chairs the board of Biowatch South Africa, which is concerned with food security and agroecology, and works closely with various environmental justice non-government organisations and two local universities.  He is a fellow of the Transnational Institute in Amsterdam.

Mabrouka M’barek, Tunisia/USA. Mabrouka M’Barek was an elected member of the Tunisian National Constituent Assembly from 2011 to 2014. Her efforts focused on including provisions of food, resources, and economic sovereignty in Tunisia’s new constitution, which she helped draft, focusing on amendments which put an end to the non-disclosure of extractive contracts and permits and open the way to the Tunisian people’s determination over their nation’s material resources.

Isaac “Asume” Osuoka, Nigeria / Canada. Asume is the Director of Social Action, a Nigerian organisation working for social justice through research, popular education and advocacy in solidarity with communities, activists, and scholars. He holds a doctorate with a specialisation in state and civil society relations.

Ibrahima Sakho Thiam, Senegal. After 2 years at the Cheikh Anta Diop University in the English Department, Ibrahima traveled to Germany to study Political science, economics, and English literature and graduated in 2010 as a PhD student on the subject: the influence of the Murid brotherhood in politics and economics in Senegal. He then joined the West African office of the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung in Dakar as a Program Officer focusing on natural resources, vulnerabilities and alternatives, and climate change.

Elandria Williams, USA. Elandria Williams has been organizing since they were 12 years old in the footsteps of family and community. They are the Executive Director at PeoplesHub, an online social movement school connecting people, strategies, analysis, solutions, and action. They also provide support to solidarity economic initiatives and is a co-editor of Beautiful Solutions, a project that is gathering some of the most promising and contagious stories, solutions, strategies and big questions for building a more just, democratic, and resilient world. They are proud to be from the US South, especially Tennessee and Florida and are also the proud auntie/uncle/mama of four nieces/nephews and four god kids.

ASIA

South Asia

Neema Pathak Broome, India. Neema Pathak Broome, is a member of Kalpavriksh, a non-profit organization working on environmental and social issues, where she coordinates the Conservation and Livelihoods program. She also coordinates activities of the Consortium supporting Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities Territories and Areas (ICCAs) in South Asia. She is on the team that facilitates the Community Forestry Resource Rights Advocacy and Learning Process (CFRLA) in India. Her interests lie in researching, documenting, understanding, facilitating and advocating for processes towards decentralized, equitable, diverse, and context specific forms of conservation governance.

Vinod Koshti, India. Vinod is a Project Manager with the RLS South Asia office working on agrarian crisis.

Ashish Kothari, India. Ashish Kothari is an Indian environmentalist working on development, environment interface, biodiversity policy, and alternatives. He is a founder-member, Kalpavriksh and has been part of many people’s movements. He taught at Indian Institute of Public Administration, coordinated India’s National Biodiversity Strategy & Action Plan, served on boards of Greenpeace International & India, helped start the ICCA Consortium. He currently helps coordinate Vikalp Sangam (www.vikalpsangam.org), Global Tapestry of Alternatives (www.globaltapestryofalternatives.org), & Radical Ecological Democracy (www.radicalecologicaldemocracy.org). Co-author/co-editor, Churning the Earth, Alternative Futures, and Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary

Madhuresh Kumar, India/France. Madhuresh Kumar does campaigns and policy advocacy work with the National Alliance of People’s Movements in India. He is a researcher and social activist, specializing in globalization and human rights issues.

South East Asia

Mary Ann Manahan, Philippines. Mary Ann Manahan is a feminist activist researcher from the Philippines who works with social movements to demand equity, social and environmental justice and redistributive reforms. She is currently the Coordinator of Global Greengrants Fund’s International Financial Institutions (IFI) Advisory Board, which provides small grants to grassroots organisations working on the socio-environmental impacts of international development finance. Mary Ann holds an undergraduate degree in sociology from the University of the Philippines-Diliman and a Master’s degree in globalisation and development from the Institute of Development Policy and Management at the University of Antwerp (Belgium).

Trang Thi Nhu Nguyen, Vietnam/Japan. Trang graduated from the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam with a solid academic background in development politics and social issues. Recently, she served as Project Manager at Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung Southeast Asia (RLS SEA), covering Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and Myanmar focusing on gender issues, labor rights, and migration. Trang is currently in Japan pursuing Master’s and researching migrant workers.

West Asia

Ansar Jasim, Iraq/Germany. Ansar Jasim is an activist-researcher and studied political science at the University of Halle (Saale) in Germany, the CNMS in Marburg (also in Germany) and SOAS in London. Since 2012 she has worked with a German-Syrian human rights organisation based in Berlin. She sees herself as an ongoing student of emancipatory grassroots and resistance movements in Syria and beyond, to whom she ascribes her interest in and understanding of politics.

AMERICAS

Raphael Hoetmer, Peru/Netherlands. Raphael Hoetmer was born in the Netherlands but has spent more than 15 years in Latin America, collaborating as a researcher, activist and popular educator with communities and social organisations in the Andean countries, particularly in the context of extractivist activities. Raphael is a member of the Permanent Discussion Group on Alternatives for Development. He has published several articles, reports and policy papers, as well as editing five volumes on social conflicts, social movements, human rights, democracy and extractivism in Latin America. He is also the proud father of two wonderful girls.

Edgardo Lander, Venezuela. Edgardo Lander is a Sociologist. He is a retired Professor from the Universidad Central de Venezuela (Caracas) and a visiting professor at the Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar (Quito). He is a Fellow of the Transnational Institute (Amsterdam) where he currently participates in the New Politics Project. He is part of the Latin American Permanent Working Group on Alternatives to Development. An active participant in the World Social Forum process. Has been a left-wing political activist for many decades. Part of the Citizen’s Platform in Defense of the Constitution (Caracas).

Miriam Lang, Ecuador. Miriam Lang works as a professor for environmental and sustainability studies at the Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar in Quito, Ecuador. She holds a PhD in sociology and a Master’s Degree in Latin American Studies from the Free University in Berlin. She collaborates with the Latin American Permanent Working Group on Alternatives to Development and with internationalist, feminist, ecologist and antiracist social movements. She was head of office of the RLS in the Andean Region 2009-2015. The book “Beyond Development – Alternative visions from Latin America” which she co-edited (2013) has been translated into seven languages.

Isabella Gonçalves Miranda, Brazil. Elected member of the municipal council of Belo Horizonte. Isabella ‘Bella’ Miranda Gonçalves is a political scientist and an activist with the urban resistance movement Popular Brigades. Her work is anchored in popular feminism and focuses on the struggles for the right to the city and urban reform. Bella holds a degree in Social Sciences from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Political Science. Bella was the third most voted BH Socialist Left Front in the 2016 municipal elections and became in 2018 a councilwoman in Belo Horizonte.

Irma Velásquez Nimatuj, Guatemala. Irma Velásquez is a Maya-K’iche’ journalist, activist, and a Brown University visiting professor. Dr. Nimatuj is an international spokeswoman for Indigenous communities in Central America and was the first Maya-K’iche’ woman to earn a doctorate in social anthropology in Guatemala. She is the author of the books: La pequeña Burguesía Comercial de Guatemala: Desigualdades de clase, raza y género (2003), Pueblos indígenas, Estado y lucha por tierra en Guatemala: Estrategias de sobrevivencia y negociación ante la desigualdad globalizada (2008) y Lunas y Calendarios, colección poesía guatemalteca (2018)

Elandria Williams, USA. Elandria Williams has been organizing since they were 12 years old in the footsteps of family and community. They are the Executive Director at PeoplesHub, an online social movement school connecting people, strategies, analysis, solutions, and action. They also provide support to solidarity economic initiatives and is a co-editor of Beautiful Solutions, a project that is gathering some of the most promising and contagious stories, solutions, strategies and big questions for building a more just, democratic, and resilient world. They are proud to be from the US South, especially Tennessee and Florida and are also the proud auntie/uncle/mama of four nieces/nephews and four god kids.

Yvonne Yanez, Ecuador. Ivonne Yanez is a founding member of Accion Ecologica, Ecuadorian environmental organisation in defence of collective and nature rights since 1986 and also Oilwatch, oil activities resistance network, founded in 1996. Ivonne works on energy, climate change and, more recently, environmental services. She has been an active promoter of the Keep the Oil in the Soil campaign for many years, with Yasuni as the emblematic case.

AUSTRALIA

Ariel Salleh, Australia. Ariel Salleh is an Australian sociologist in the Department of Political Economy at the University of Sydney who writes on humanity-nature relations, social change movements, and ecofeminism. Formerly Associate Professor in Social Ecology at the University of Western Sydney, she has lectured in New York, Manila, Toronto and, most recently, was a Visiting Professor at Lund University (Sweden).

EUROPE

Ulrich Brand, Austria – University of Vienna, Austria. Ulrich Brand is professor of international policy at Vienna University. He is a member of the organizing committee of the “Degrowth Conference 2020. Strategies for Social-Ecological Transformation” taking place from May 29 to June 1st, 2020 in Vienna. His forthcoming book with Verso is The Imperial Mode of Living. On the Exploitation of Human Beings and Nature in Global Capitalism (co-authored with Markus Wissen).

Mauro Castro, Barcelona, Spain La Hidra Cooperativa. Dr Mauro Castro Coma is an activist, researcher and associate professor at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC). He graduated in economics before completing a PhD in Political Science and was a co-founder of consultancy and social research enterprise La Hidra Cooperativa and is an active member of the Fundación de los Comunes, a project driven by various experiences of autonomous research, education, publishing and political intervention in social movements in Spain. He has been involved in organising scientific events and research projects and has had various scientific publications in authoritative journals such as EURE, Urbe, and the Social Justice Journal.

Maxime Combes, France. Maxime Combes is an economist and one of the figures of Attac France, where he follows the major national and global environmental and energy challenges. He is also involved in Echos des Alternatives (alter-echos.org), Basta (bastamag.net) and Mouvements (mouvement.info). He is co-author of the book published by Attac, La Nature n’a pas de prix (Paris, L.L.L., 2012) and Crime climatique stop! (“Anthropocene” Seuil edition, August 2015).

Karin Gabbert, sociologist and journalist from Germany/Ecuador. Karin is the Head of the Latin American section at Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung Berlin, she was previously the Head of the Andean Region office in Quito. In 2019 she edited the book „Cómo se sostiene la vida en América Latina?” together with Miriam Lang which is available at the homepage of the RLS Andean office.

Marlis Gensler, Belgium. Marlis Gensler works at Rosa Luxembourg Foundation in Brussels, studied and focuses her research on history of geography, Karl Polanyi, and Global (North/South) Environmental Politics.

Claus-Dieter König, Germany – RLS Berlin. Claus-Dieter König works as a senior advisor in the Africa department of Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung, Berlin, Germany. He was previously director of the Western Africa regional office in Dakar and deputy director of the Brussels Office of Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from Philipps-Universität Marburg, Germany and has published on political culture, the state in Africa, social movements and industrial and economic policies.

Larry Lohman, UK. Larry Lohmann works with the Corner House, a UK research and solidarity organisation. He has contributed to numerous scholarly books as well as to journals on land and forest conflicts, globalization, Southeast Asian environmental movements, racism, commons, climate change and the discourses of development, population, and economics. He is also a founding member of the Durban Group for Climate Justice.

Beatriz Rodríguez Labajos, Spain/USA. Beatriz Rodríguez-Labajos is an ecological economist and researcher at the Institute for Environmental Science and Technology of the Autonomous University of Barcelona (ICTA-UAB). She is also a Marie Sklodowska Curie Researcher at the Energy and Resources group of the University of California Berkeley (ERG-UC Berkeley). Her research interests are the socioeconomic dimensions of biodiversity, environmental justice, artistic activism, and ecosystem service assessment. Her field experience includes regions of Europe, Latin America, the US, and southeast Asia. Her publications focus on biodiversity conservation, environmental conflicts, water management, and agro-ecosystems. She collaborated with the Water Catalan Agency and was deputy coordinator of the EJOLT project. Currently, she coordinates the CLAMOR project on creative environmental justice activism.

Ferdinand Muggenthaler, Germany/ Ecuador. Ferdinand is the Head of the Andean Region office in Quito

Giorgos Velegrakis, Greece. Giorgos is an adjunct faculty at the Philosophy and History of Science Department at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (Greece). He holds a Ph.D. in geography and political ecology from the Harokopio University of Athens. Previously a Marie Curie doctoral fellow, he has considerable research experience regarding issues of relevance to the relationship between the environment and society. He has published and edited books and articles on topics relating to policies regarding extractivism, political ecology, radical geography, socio-environmental conflicts and movements, and the science-technology-society (STS) approach.