Enabling and empowering social entrepreneurship
This project aims to enable and empower social entrepreneurship, dealing with social and environmental issues. Well-known examples of social entrepreneurship are Tony’s Chocolonely (aimed at fighting slave labor in the cacao value chain, among others) and Dopper (aimed at reducing the use of plastic, among others), but also many other, often small-scaled, firms are practicing social entrepreneurship. Growing interest among citizens, policymakers and scholars regarding the positive impacts of entrepreneurial action beyond economic growth is clear. Thus, the core of this project are two days with a group of 25 entrepreneurs on the practices of opportunity creation, mobilization of supportive communities and organizational survival in competitive markets. The 25 entrepreneurs may represent existing businesses as well as start-ups.
- Prof. Enno Masurel, Department of Management and Organization / VU Center for Entrepreneurship, School of Business and Economics
- Dr Neil Thompson, Department of Management and Organization, School of Business and Economics
- Dr Michel Verver, Department of Organization Sciences, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Social Science
Plastic, science and society symposium: An exploration of the power of transdisciplinarity in sustainability research and education
This project aims to unite disciplines and help scientists and students working on this topic open their minds to new ways of thinking about these complex issues surrounding the plastics problem. If there was ever a global issue that required creative thinking outside the box, this is it. We will achieve this through bringing scholars of different disciplines together with artists and other societal actors in an interactive one-day symposium aimed to discuss inter- and transdisciplinary approaches to dealing with the plastic pollution issue. A mix of lectures and workshops have been organized.
- Dr Heather Leslie, Department of Environment & Health, Faculty of Science
- Miranda van Holland, 3D Program Coordinator, EARS, Valorization Officer Faculty of Religion and Theology
Growing up with hope or despair? Investigating Dutch teenagers’ comportment towards the future in the age of climate change
In this project, we wish to explore what climate change means for Dutch teenagers’ view of their future. A special role is given to the concept of hope. To do so, we will investigate how teenagers relate themselves to narratives of hope, optimism, pessimism and cynicism. The project’s main research question is how do Dutch teenagers comport themselves towards the future in the age of climate change? A central role is given to the understanding of hope as can be found in the work of Jonathan Sacks and Erik Borgman.
- Dr Gerdien Bertram-Troost, Faculty of Religion and Theology and Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences
- Drs Jan Jorrit Hasselaar, Amsterdam Centre for Religion and Sustainable Development, Faculty of Religion and Theology
- Dr Barbara Regeer, Athena Institute, Faculty of Science
- Dr Pim Klaassen, Athena Institute, Faculty of Science
- Dr Willemine Willems, Athena Institute, Faculty of Science
Dutch homes gas-free by 2050? Speeding up the rate of energy-efficient renovations with the help of behavioral research
The energy-efficient renovation of residential homes is one of the big challenges the Netherlands faces. As high up-front cost and lack of trust were identified as perceived major barriers for energy-efficient renovations, behavioral interventions need to enhance trust and address the renovation measures’ relative costs and benefits. This asks for a concerted effort of behavioral researchers as well as businesses and public authorities to jointly research behavioral interventions to speed up the renovation rate. To this end, we will jointly set up a long-term collaborative research initiative, C-Lab Energy, that aims to build up a database on individual renovation decisions from various sources (surveys, online experiments, field experiments, existing statistical and geodata) to enable researchers from ASI and other Dutch universities to jointly research the barriers to energy-efficient renovations as well as instruments to overcome them.
- Dr Julia Blasch, Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), Faculty of Science
- Dr Menusch Khadjavi, Department of Spatial Economics, School of Business and Economics
- Dr Giuliana Spadaro, Department of Experimental and Applied Psychology, Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences
Human mortality in European cities under climate change
While the previous ASI project focused on empirical analyses of climate-related mortality in the Netherlands, the current project is an upscaling of these findings (along with other information and studies, see methodology) in a European scale analysis of expected mortality changes and related economic impacts in cities due to climate change. Thus, we will develop a spatially explicit model that projects mortality changes for all major European cities under various climate change and socio-economic scenarios of population change, while accounting for additional warming from the UHI. This impact model can according to the IPCC (2014) risk assessment framework be divided in hazard, exposure, and vulnerability components. The hazard model is based on a newly developed Integrated Assessment Model called CLIMRISK (Estrada and Botzen, 2019) which produces spatially explicit temperature projections under climate change scenarios that are probabilistic by accounting for uncertainty in GCM temperature projections and climate sensitivity.
- Prof. Wouter Botzen, Department of Environmental Economics, Institute for Environmental Studies, Faculty of Sciences
- Prof. Hein Daanen, Department of Human Movement Sciences, Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences
Does climate change cause emotional stress and undermine attention and productivity?
There is increasing attention for the link between emotions and climate change. This project examines the emotions linked to climate change: whether explicit reminders of climate change may interfere with both emotions and cognitive performance. In particular, using online experimentation services 2 (Qualtrics), we will examine in two Western countries (i.e., Germany, The Netherlands) whether reminders of climate change will make people (a) experience more negative emotions (especially worry and helplessness, but also regret and social emotions such as shame and guilt), and (b) perform worse on simple, incentivized cognitive attention performance tasks.
- Prof. Paul A. M. van Lange, Department of Experimental and Applied Psychology, Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences
- Dr Menusch Khadjavi, Department of Spatial Economics, School of Business and Economics
Looking where no one is looking – a food system horizon scan to identify emerging food system issues
In order to manage wicked food system problems and to make progress towards the grand challenge of food system sustainability, we need to develop novel research approaches that include multiple diverse perspectives, that challenge assumptions and that aim to illuminate the unexpected. In this project we aim to use 'horizon scanning techniques' to truly identify food system issues that are at the margins of current attention, that are novel and unexpected – we aim to look where none is looking or identify the ‘unasked questions’. To foster the out-of-the-box thinking that is required for such a goal, we will carry out small-scale workshops with leading thinkers on food system sustainability from within and outside VU. The proposed food system horizon scan would thus help VU food system researchers carry out more transformative and boundarypushing research and help VU take a role of transformational leadership in food system research.
- Dr Verena Seufert, Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), Faculty of Science
- Dr Lia van Wesenbeeck, Amsterdam Centre for World Food Studies (ACWFS), School of Business and Economics
- Dr Tomris Cesuroglu, Athena Institute, Faculty of Science
ICT 4 Food Security (I4FoodSec)
In the concern for food and nutrition security in poor rural regions in countries such as Mali Burkina Faso and the north of Ghana, the seed value chain plays an important role. This research will pilot the application of an interdisciplinary approach called “Decision Maps” (Lago, 2019) so far applied to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) solutions for Urban Futures, on the question of how to improve the seed production in Mali in a sustainable way. It does so based on locally-collected information from the farmers and farmer organizations (in previous projects).
- Prof. Patricia Lago, Professor of Software Engineering and Sustainability, Faculty of Science
- Anna Bon, Senior Advisor, CIS-VU – Center of International Collaboration
- Wendelien Tuyp, Advisor Sustainable Land Management, CIS-VU – Center of International Collaboration