Early career wrap: Beyond SDG11 A Focus on Urban Transformation

Beyond SDG11: A Focus on Urban Transformation was originally slated to occur in late April at Western Sydney University, however due to university closures and social distancing restrictions, we were unable to hold the event in its original three-day format. As a result, this event was split into two, an open online webinar series focusing on the urban and a two-day intensive opportunity for event attendees to present their work. By splitting the event into two we hope to continue to enable not only long-lasting relationships, but future collaborative efforts that enable societal transformation.

Webinar Series

The webinar series was held weekly from Friday 8 of May through to Thursday 21 May. Each webinar ran for about 2 hours and consisted of a mix of presentations from within the Future earth Australia community and interactive sessions where attendees were broken up into smaller groups and worked together on activities. 

Over the course of the webinar series, we engaged over 40 ECRPs from 10 member universities. For those that may have missed out on the webinars, we have it recorded, and you can find the links here:

Part 1 A Focus on SDGs: https://youtu.be/jzXOfqbvS8c

Speakers included Professor Juan Salazar from Western Sydney University, Professor Jago Dodson from RMIT, Associate Professor Lauren Rickards from RMIT and Dr Taryn Laubenstein from Future Earth Australia.

Part 2  Different Approacheshttps://youtu.be/uUlgklfHxFM

Speakers included Professor Tim Smith from University of Sunshine Coast, Dr Megan Evans from UNSW Canberra and Eleanor Robson from Future Earth Australia.

Part 3 Communicating your Research: https://youtu.be/fU7VXYQ6SDk 

Speakers included Dr Johanna Nalau from Griffith University and Dr Taryn Laubenstein from Future Earth Australia.

Two-day Intensive

In contrast to the open nature of the Urban series of webinars, the two-day intensive was open only to those who were originally accepted to attend the event at Western Sydney University.

Over the two days 19 ECRPs gathered virtually via Zoom and presented their work. Presentations were selected due to their connection to the theme of the event Beyond SDG11: A Focus on Urban Transformation. The event was truly interdisciplinary with presentations covering such topics as the creation of energy from waste water, how climate science is portrayed in film, the use of community gardens as communal spaces and urban issues relating to informal settlements around the world.

Attendees were engaged both in the presentastions themselves as well as through the use of the chat function in Zoom asking presenters questions long after the official “Q&A” portion of the presentation was complete.

This two day intensive was the first of its kind hosted by the Future Earth Australia ECRP program and we would like to thank all presenters for their enthusiasm during the two days and their patience during inevitable technology struggles.