Bergen Summer Research School
BSRS 2015

How to create a sustainable future

Is a sustainable society possible? With several open talks between June 15 and 27, the Bergen Summer Research School will seek to find out how.

Polar bear
GLOBAL CHALLENGES. This year, the new Sustainable Development Goals receive full attention at the Bergen Summer Research School.
Anette Holmberg

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Monday is kick-off for Bergen Summer Research School (BSRS) with a series of open lectures. First is none other than UiB’s Rector Dag Rune Olsen who will talk about the UNs new Sustainable Development Goals and how they should be used to promote excellence in research and education.

Already this weekend, PhD candidates from around the world start to gather in Bergen. This year, UiB will host 130 participants and lecturer from 26 countries. This is the eighth year that the Bergen research institutions organize an international summer research school focusing on global challenges - this year the new SDG get full attention.

Watch the opening lectures live

“This year we are proud to host seven internationally prominent speakers who will address topics of sustainability and poverty reduction from various disciplines. Monday’s lecture by former Health Director Bjørn-Inge Larsen should be of interest to many. All lectures are of course open to the public,” says Dr Hans Geir Aasmundsen who is academic coordinator of this year's Summer Research School.

Bjorn-Inge Larsen will give a review of the process from the 2000-2015 Millennium Development Goals (MDG) to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of today. The evaluation of the MDG and debates around how the international community should best address the global challenges around a sustainable future will be central to his presentation.

Open to all

“Students, researchers and other interested parties should seize this opportunity to be updated on the important work now being done before the sustainability goals will be adopted at the UN General Assembly in September,” says Dr Howaida Faisal Abdelrahman. She is the administrative coordinator for BSRS.

Also on Monday, Professor Siri Gloppen will give a keynote lecture on how legislation can play a role in creating a sustainable society. Later in the week Bron Taylor from the University of Florida will examine sustainability from the perspective of Religion and Nature

Michael Celia from Princeton University will be looking at how we can meet our future energy needs. On Friday, David Hulme of Manchester University will compare the eight MDGs with the far more comprehensive SDGs.

There will also be panel discussions on social changes which are inevitable if we are to secure a sustainable future and how we can get the world to take the necessary grips.

“We hope people will seize the opportunity to get updated on the debates and approaches to a sustainable future and learn more about the SDGs. The open lectures are only part of the Summer Research School. In addition to the five intensive thematic research courses, the PhD candidates will also participate in a series of closed plenary lectures and debates,” says Aasmundsen.

“This will be a hectic fortnight, but we will also have time to get to know each other and expand our networks though many social events,” says Abdelrahman.