2018 Summer Academy on World Risk and Adaptation Futures: Urbanization


    A leading global challenge today centers on the capacity to make appropriate decisions that will navigate countries and communities towards a safe, sustainable future. Uncertainty about future risk trends plays a central role in whether or not policy makers and practitioners can make decisions that help society adapt to climate risks and capture the opportunities ahead. To overcome that gap we initiated the Summer Academy on World Risk and Adaptation Futures and invite experts to discuss this challenge and find solutions.

    Who is invited and what are we aiming for

    The Academy strives for a balance of participants from different parts of the world and with different thematic backgrounds. The Academy will bring together a group of young professionals, including academic scholars (at PhD, post-doc and professorial level), policy makers and practitioners. Different perspectives are important to foster a common understanding.

    Teachers and Facilitators: Participants will play an important role in setting the agenda of the Academy and providing content. To complement the expertise of the group, we will invite key resource persons, such as IPCC authors. The agenda will be shaped in consultation with the UNFCCC secretariat.

    Special focus 2018:

    Urbanization is one of the core factors shaping future exposure and vulnerability to environmental and climatic hazards. The growth of cities at coasts or in river deltas, for example, significantly increases the exposure of humans and infrastructure to floods, storms and other hazards. At the same time, urbanization can have manifold positive as well as negative implications for vulnerability, for instance, through its feedbacks with economic growth, socio-economic disparity trends or institutional changes to govern cross-scale adaptation measures. The 2018 Summer Academy will therefore concentrate on novel approaches to assess the relationships with urbanization and future trends in exposure and vulnerability. It will convene contributions from different conceptual and methodological directions, including, for example, backcasting, quantitative modelling and participatory scenario approaches.

    Dates and venue:

    The Summer Academy 2018 will take place in the hotel Rheinhotel Schulz near Bonn/Germany from 24 to 28 September. Accommodation, food and local travel during the academy will be provided in full by the organizers. Arrival and departure have to be organized by the participants themselves.

    Your hosts:

    The Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) is one of 15 worldwide operating research and training centres and programmes of the United Nations University (UNU). Its mission is to contribute to efforts to resolve the pressing global problems that are the concern of the United Nations and its member states. UNU’s current activities regarding research and training are mainly focused on the environment and sustainable development on the one hand and peace and governance on the other. UNU disseminates the knowledge gained in its activities to the United Nations and its agencies, to scholars and to the public, in order to increase dynamic interactions in the world-wide community of learning and research.

    Munich Re Foundation (MRF) is a non-profit foundation established by the Münchener Rückversicherungsgesellschaft Aktiengesellschaft in Munich (“Munich Re”) on the occasion of its 125th anniversary in 2005. People are ultimately at the core of what MRF’s work is all about. MRF’s task is to minimise the risks to which they are exposed. It supports science and provides support, also in developing countries. MRF’s aim is to prepare people to cope with risk and to improve their living conditions in relation to water as a resource and risk factor, population development, poverty, urbanization and megacities, disaster prevention, environmental and climate change.

    Academy partner:

    The UNFCCC secretariat (UN Climate Change) was established in 1992 when countries adopted the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The secretariat to the Convention, located in Bonn, Germany, is the United Nations entity tasked with supporting the global response to the threat of climate change. The UNFCCC secretariat supports a complex architecture of bodies that serve to advance the implementation of the Convention, the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. The secretariat provides technical expertise and assists in the analysis and review of climate change information reported by Parties and in the implementation of the Kyoto mechanisms. It also maintains the registry for Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) established under the Paris Agreement, a key aspect of implementation of the Paris Agreement.

    Read more about the Summer Academy.

  • Application process

    • 20 April 2018: Call for applications
    • 27 May 2018: Application deadline
    • 13 June 2018: Notification of acceptance

    To apply, please provide the following

    • A short motivational letter including one concise paragraph describing how your work relates to the Summer Academy programme;
    • A concise abstract (300 words max.) of the work you would like to present, covering the rationale, approach/methods and key findings of your work;
    • An up-to-date CV, including a list of publications or concluded projects if available;
    • Contact details for a reference.

    Advanced English language skills will be necessary. Please send all materials in one email with the subject line “ACADEMY” to: summer.academy.2018@ehs.unu.edu

  • Accommodation, food and local travel during the academy will be provided in full by the organizers.
    A limited budget for travel reimbursement is available upon request. Travel costs for flights, train tickets, visa costs are eligible; costs for per diems will not be covered.

  • For questions about the academy and its content, please contact scientific lead Matthias Garschagen: garschagen@ehs.unu.edu
    For submitting your applications, please send to: summer.academy.2018@ehs.unu.edu