Conditions for Transformative Change: The Role of Responsibility, Solidarity, and Care in Climate Change Research

Petra Tschakert, Asuncion Lera St. Clair

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperConference paper


The concept of transformation is increasingly used to advocate for individual and systemic change, not just responses to climate change. Deliberate, intentional transformation foregrounds relationships between attitudes, values, and individual and collective transformative action. However, it says little about the conditions under which this relationship can flourish and when it is constrained. Equally little is known about the specific values that are to guide proposed transformations, and particular articulations of responsibilities along alternative pathways. To address this gap, we first offer a relational framing of climate change and conceive possible pathways that foreground collective well-being through deliberate and deliberative transformation. We propose a radical notion of transformative change, and the tasks for responsibility and care to materialize such change. Of particular interest are embodied practices and the multiplicity of trajectories and encounters that define individual responsibilities of place while connecting us to distant others. In the main part of the paper, we reflect on interconnectedness and transformative change processes as cornerstones for new transdisciplinary climate change research. We highlight two main perspectives: 1) a relational ontology of responsibility and care; and 2) an epistemology of place based on a relational politics of place beyond place. We close by advocating more inclusive, care-full, responsible, and actionable relational climate change scholarship that focuses on transformative processes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransformation in a Changing Climate
EditorsKaren O’Brien, Linda Sygna, Asuncion Lera St.Clair, Per Olsson, Heide Hackmann, Eva Bakkeslett
Place of PublicationOslo
PublisherUniversity of Oslo
Number of pages9
ISBN (Print)978-82-570-2000-2
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
EventTransformations in a changing climate - Oslo, Norway
Duration: 19 Jun 201321 Jun 2013


ConferenceTransformations in a changing climate


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