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News / STEPS Centre Symposium 2009

We live in a time of transformations. The collapse of the Washington “consensus”, the financial crisis, the rise of China and other emerging economies and, of course, the threat of global climate change call for a rethinking of existing institutions, structures and paradigms.

At the same time a renewed democratic spirit is mobilising sections of global civil society with hopes of radical reform. However, the agenda for the Copenhagen climate talks seems to fall short of this goal, and the G8 declaration from Abruzzo leaves many unanswered questions.

Especially unclear is the precise role of science, technology and different forms of innovation in tackling the multitude of challenges, and the ways in which they can be co-ordinated to respond to urgent needs at different levels of society.

In this time of change, the STEPS Centre is focussing its Annual Symposium on the emerging themes, challenges and opportunities that current reconfigurations present for innovation, sustainability and development.

We hope to draw academics, policy-makers, civil society and private sector representatives together to discuss positive reforms at international, national and local levels that will link innovation to the goals of poverty alleviation and environmental sustainability. The Symposium forms part of the STEPS Centre project, Innovation, Sustainability, Development: A New Manifesto.

>>Download the STEPS Centre Symposium 2009 – programme (pdf 298kb)

>>Download the Symposium list of participants (pdf 125kb)

>>Video vox pop from the Symposium. Delegates were asked to give one recommendation to the UN, or another global body, on innovation for sustainabilty and development. View the recommendations of over 20 delegates on our YouTube channel.

>>Blogs from the Symposium. Some IDS and SPRU students blogged for us at the event – Julian Pineres Ramirez, Sara Wolcott and Oliver Johnson. Thier posts will appear on the STEPS Centre blog,  The Crossing.

>>Speaker presentations from the Symposium are available to view, share and download from our Slideshare site.

>>Photos from the Symposium are on our Flickr page


Goals of the Symposium
The STEPS Centre would like the day’s proceedings to:

– Identify, highlight and discuss new approaches to the governance of science, technology and innovation for poverty alleviation, social justice and environmental sustainability objectives.

– Gather feedback, both positive and negative, on the first draft of the STEPS Centre’s New Manifesto, which will be provided to participants in advance.

– Draw together and debate more detailed recommendations around broadening the scope of innovation policy, informing and democratising innovation.

Videos and summaries of the symposium discussions will be documented here, on the new manifesto website. The event will also act as the launch for a broader series of engagements with different partners at international roundtables to be held between October 2009 and March 2010.

Together, these events will contribute to highlighting a diversity of viewpoints around innovation, sustainability and development in the run-up to the launch of the final New Manifesto in Spring 2010.

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