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Collaborative Learning & Co-creation of Sustainable Living: Responding to the Crisis and Reshaping the Way Forward

The COVID-19 pandemic has had various impacts on global efforts to achieve more sustainable ways of living. Among them, distancing measures, including school closures and restriction of gatherings, has made it challenging to foster collaborative learning and co-creation among people in physical settings such as communities, workplaces, and schools. Practitioners working on the ground are devising creative solutions to these challenges, including the online shift of communication and learning. Such responses may result in new gaps in opportunities for collaboration among people by, for example, deepening inequalities related to lack of access to technology and resources. They may also enable broader participation or the development of more practical activities with a deeper consideration of the background causes of unsafe and unsustainable living conditions.

The session starts with the sharing of experiences by ground-level project implementers supported by the Sustainable Lifestyles and Education Programme of the UN One-Planet Network in recovering and enhancing collaborative learning and co-creation during the COVID-19 crisis period, with particular focus on inclusiveness. Then the panellists, including civil society and governments working on sustainable lifestyles will discuss the following:

  1. How can civil society, governments, researchers share their efforts and experiences in recovering the opportunities for collaboration and learning and utilise them?
  2. How do the lessons inform us in reshaping our efforts for sustainable lifestyles into more inclusive and resilient ones?

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Atsushi Watabe

Atsushi Watabe

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Dr Watabe received a PhD in Media and Governance at Keio University. Since he has joined IGES he worked for several programmes including the international cooperation programmes to develop climate change policies and the action study on the recovery from the Nuclear Accident in Fukushima. He has led the Coordination Desk of the Sustainable Lifestyles and Education Programme of the UN 10-Year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production Patterns (One-Planet Network) since 2015. With his background in sociology, he has collaborated with and learned from many community-level initiatives to enable sustainable ways of living.

Education Manager, Akatu Institute

Denise Conselheiro

Denise Conselheiro

Education Manager, Akatu Institute

Denise Conselheiro, Education Manager at Akatu Institute, holds a degree in Journalism, a law degree and a postgraduate qualification in International Relations. She has over 10 years of experience in developing and executing education and communications strategies for social and environmental causes, with a focus on human rights and children’s and adolescents’ rights, in organizations such as Amigos da Terra – Amazônia Brasileira, Conectas Human Rights, and CEATS/FIA-USP.

Environmental Education Project Manager, African Conservation Trust

Bridget Ringdahl

Bridget Ringdahl

Environmental Education Project Manager, African Conservation Trust

Bridget Ringdahl holds a Masters degree in Environmental Sciences from the University of Lund Sweden, an Honours Degree in Environmental Science from UCT and an Bachelor of Sciences from UKZN. She is passionate about the environment, is plant-based and lives as sustainably as possible.

In her early career she worked as an environmental consultant specialising in GIS, but soon moved onto WESSA where she took up a roll as a Project coordinator for the SADC Environmental Education Programme that was part funded by SIDA and US AID.

In 2006 she was then appointed as the Programme manager for the WESSA Eco-Schools programme. During the 10 years she managed South Africa’s most well known and respected EE programme.

In 2014 she then set up the International Water Explorer Programme in South Africa and has grown this programme into an extremely successful action-orientated school intervention programme that support the curriculum. She also implemented the IGES Japan, Global Search for Sustainable Schools project

Associate Professor & Centre Director, Centre for Collaborative Learning for Sustainable Development, Faculty of Education, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences

Robert J. Didham

Robert J. Didham

Associate Professor & Centre Director, Centre for Collaborative Learning for Sustainable Development, Faculty of Education, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences

Robert J. Didham (Ph.D.) is the director of the Center for Collaborative Learning for Sustainable Development and an associate professor at Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences. With a background in community-based sustainable development, public participation and social learning, Dr. Didham has extensive experience in interdisciplinary research and capacity building projects. He has coordinated multi-country research on education for sustainable development, sustainable consumption, and adaptation planning, and he has led policy support projects for several national governments. Previously, Dr. Didham was the senior coordinator for capacity development and education at the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), based in Japan, where he worked extensively throughout the Asia-Pacific region. At the Center for Collaborative Learning, Dr. Didham is overseeing action research projects on participatory planning and local implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and on integrating transformative learning approaches in both formal and non-formal education.

Programme Manager, Sustainable Consumption and Production, IGES

Dwayne Appleby

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Programme Manager, Sustainable Consumption and Production, IGES

Dwayne Appleby is Program Manager for Sustainable Consumption and Production Institute for Global Environmental Strategies in Japan. Over the past ten years, he has worked with governments, financial institutions, businesses and the not-for-profit sector to address systemic issues of sustainability ranging from industrial production to national policy and consumer behaviour. Dwayne has also worked with UN Environment on several initiatives focused on sustainable lifestyles and is a founding member of the Global Research Forum on Sustainable Production and Consumption. Dwayne holds an MSc. in Development Studies from the London School of Economics, where his studies focused on the role of government in fostering the transition to sustainable 'green' energy.

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Gohar Khojayan

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Communication Specialist, Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment (AWHHE) NGO

MS. GOHAR KHOJAYAN studied in Moscow State Pedagogical University and received her MA degree from the Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences in 1989 following which she taught at the Yerevan State Pedagogical Institute and the Garmirian School of the Armenian General Benevolent Union in Beirut, Lebanon. During 1993 – 2003 she worked for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)- Armenia as Communication Officer and Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer. During 2004-2005 she worked as Public Education Director for the Yerevan office of the Armenian EyeCare Project (AECP), a US-based charity organization. In 2010, following a career break for family reasons, she joined the Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment (AWHHE) NGO as Communications Specialist.

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Socorro Leonardo Patindol

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President/ Coordinator for GSSS Philippines, PCEAS Inc.

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Lylian Rodriguez Jiménez

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Director, Foundation for Sustainable Tropical Agricultural Production, University of Tropical Agriculture (UTA) Colombia

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Mike Ward

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Director: Creating Sustainable Value (Pty) Ltd and a Senior Sustainability Consultant to the Climate Investment Funds

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AMAKO Naoki

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Deputy Director, International Strategy Division, Global Environment Bureau, Ministry of the Environment, Japan

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