2021 International Transdisciplinarity Conference

Creating spaces and cultivating mindsets for learning and experimentation

September 13-17, 2021, ETH Zürich, Switzerland

Crises unleashed by climate change and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic, urge us to finding sustainable solutions to social, cultural, political, economic, ecological and, health challenges. The crisis has shown that existing modes of overcoming challenges are limited. There is a call to move beyond what we already know and do. Building spaces and cultivating mindsets for learning and experimentation are keys for creating these new possibilities. Real-world labs, living labs, social innovations, transition experiments serve as inspirations for the design and implementation of this conference.

The International Transdisciplinarity Conference (ITD) “Creating Spaces and Cultivating Mindsets for Learning and Experimentation”, provides a platform for engagement, discussion, and action that links transdisciplinary research (TD), (un)learning, and practice. As a virtual forum, the ITD Conference 2021 will bring together individuals, communities, and institutions from across the globe. The goal is to advance TD concepts and methodologies, as well as strengthen their potential for addressing societal needs by connecting lecturers, researchers, practitioners, and students. This forum will cover the following themes:

  • Integrative TD: To advance TD concepts and methodologies, how can we increase capacity to integrate expertise from multiple fields of knowledge including humanities and arts across disciplines, interdisciplinary fields, and occupational professions? How can imagination help us to build new/other futures?
  • TD on-the-ground: To connect diverse communities and practices, what are processes and practices being carried out in the name of TD, how can TD facilitate inclusive and equitable research and how can we better understand the impact and effectiveness of these processes and practices? How can we improve based on these practices?
  • Global and virtual TD: How can we expand the potential contributions of TD in both real and virtual environments? What are the opportunities and challenges in applying TD in diverse geographical, social, political, and cultural contexts?
  • TD learning for transformation: How can we reimagine education, and how can TD concepts contribute to personal transformation and development? What is the role of collective learning in TD research and practice? How can we navigate potential roles, between neutrality, activism, emancipation?
  • Institutionalizing and funding TD: What greater role can TD play in institutes of higher education and in society at large? What are means to enhance the role of TD in decision making processes? How can TD career paths be developed in existing institutions? What are appropriate funding schemes, program designs and management structures for TD research?

The conference is co-organized by the Transdisciplinarity Lab (TdLab), ETH Zurich in Switzerland and the Network for Transdisciplinary Research (td-net) of the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences.

The conference information will be updated regularly. Stay informed with our td-info newsletter and twitter #itdconf2021

  • Call for Contributions: opens January 2021, submissions possible until end of March 2021
  • Notification of acceptance: approx. May 2021


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