Universiteit Leiden

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'The necessary and the possible': a project on social movements as drivers of change

Postdoctoral researcher Joost de Moor, who joined the interdisciplinary Global Transformations and Governance Challenges (GTGC) initiative at Leiden University since April 2021, will spend 50% of his time doing research for the project "The necessary and the possible: How social movements articulate, convey and negotiate visions of a fossil-free and just future".

The four year-long project is funded by FORMAS. Joost will conduct this research together with Mattias Wahlström (PI, University of Gothenburg), Lotte Schack (University of Gothenburg), Katrin Uba (Uppsala University) and Magnus Wennerhag (Södertörn University).

“We start from the notion that social movements have historically been central drivers of societies’ progressive changes. Today, societies may once again need the creative input of social movements to realize their ambitious climate goal of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2045.”

Focusing on Sweden, their aim is to show how social movements promote visions for a fossil-free welfare society, and move beyond a binary notion of accepting or rejecting these visions by unpacking at each stage of the diffusion process why activists, citizens or politicians end up in favour or against certain visions.

First, the researchers analyze which visions movements rally around while they reject others, and how they promote them. Second, they investigate how promoted visions are received by the general public and political elites; thereby assessing how visions travel throughout the Swedish society.

Interested to learn more about this project?

You can contact Joost de Moor or take a look at the project website at the University of Gothenburg.

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