Category Archives: Event

Critical food studies workshop and seminar series: Foodscapes of the sharing economy

Critical food studies workshop and seminar series

Organized by the Foodscapes cluster of the Centre for Space, Place and Society (CSPS)

Foodscapes of the sharing economy

25 September 2018 – 13.45-17.00

Room C 62 in de Leeuwenborch (Hollandseweg 1, Wageningen)

During the recent decade, new modes of food provisioning have emerged under the guise of the sharing economy. A dominant picture of initiatives in the sharing economy is associated with platform capitalism and the gig economy. Yet, a variety of initiatives are using the tools of the sharing economy to promote sustainable consumption, thereby reducing our dependence on commercial activity and reducing the use and reliance on material possessions. This seminar will scrutinize the interconnections of the sharing economy and food, people and places. We are interested in food in the sharing economy, how exchanges are performed, by whom, and to what end. We want to provide an embodied understanding of food and place in the sharing economy. We are interested in issues of social, spatial and environmental justice, health and well-being in the sharing economy.


13.45 – 14.00   Walking in

14.00 – 14.15   Introduction

14.15 – 15.00   Karin Dobernig and Karin Schanes: Collective Action Around Food Waste: Investigating the determinants and characteristics of participation in food sharing initiatives

15.00 – 15.15   Discussion

15.15 – 15.30   Coffee break

15.30-16.30     Roundtable discussion

With Karin Dobernig, Karin Schanes, Esther Veen, Oona Morrow, Stefan Wahlen

16.30-17.00     Drinks

About the foodscapes cluster:

The Foodscapes cluster brings together a variety of academic researchers and PhD candidates at Wageningen University, who are engaged in the multi-disciplinary domain of critical food studies.



CSPS seminar: “Explore the Carpathian Garden!” – Securing nature as greener in the periphery of Europe

“Explore the Carpathian Garden!” – Securing nature as greener in the periphery of Europe

Tuesday 5 June, 11:30 – 12:30

Leeuwenborch C78

The seminar will investigate the emergence of green economy and securitization logics in the process of constructing the Carpathian Mountains as a wilderness frontier. The project of establishing ‘The European Yellowstone’ in Romania will serve as a study case in understanding the expansion and adaptation of neoliberal environmental governance in the region.
Green economy and securitization lump together across the globe, scholars from different disciplines producing critical analyses on how these two processes unfold and conceal each other’s genealogies (Masse, Lunstrum 2016). Cases particularly from the Global South account for the co-productive ontology of the two, where securitization practices are highly depoliticized and green businesses are assumed to be environmentally harmless (Kelly, Gupta 2016). Mostly ignored in current academic debates, the same processes develop unabated in peripheral Europe, a region in which their necessity is locally predicated on narratives of degradation, disruption and evanescence of wilderness threatened by illegal logging and wildlife trade (Dorondel 2016). Although new member states are supposed to implement EU environmental directives in which human-made landscapes are regarded as valuable (Neumann 2014), over the last few years the region has witnessed notable initiatives celebrating untouched nature and rewilding opportunities (Vasile 2018). In Romania some of the most extreme projects advocate severe measures of protection, fencing formerly communal lands and banning forest dependent groups from using their traditional sources of income (Iordachesu 2018). Both Romania’s touristic brand and the set of policies opening the agricultural and forestland markets for the global capital have encouraged a boom in green businesses developments (EcoRuralis 2016), particularly nature-based tourism.

In the case that we are presenting these imaginations of pristine nature have actively remaking economies, landscapes, livelihoods and social relations inside communities. Particular attention will be devoted to understanding the postsocialist transformations which offered the fertile conditions of saving and constructing wilderness reserves as private initiatives.

Speaker bio

George Iordachescu is a PhD Researcher in Analysis and Management of Cultural Heritage at IMT School for Advanced Studies Lucca, Italy. His current research investigates within a political ecology approach the emergence of untouched nature narratives in Eastern Europe. George’s interests span from environmental history to critical museology mainly revolving around ecotourism, green grabbing, theories of access and green cultural studies. From 2016 to 2017 he was part of a team of sociologists from the Romanian Academy of Sciences which investigated and mapped over 1700 community based institutions managing pastures and forestlands across rural Romania.



Annual lecture by Erik Swyngedouw


We are happy to announce that we have confirmed Erik Swyngedouw to give our annual lecture on Thursday 7 June from 16:00 – 17:30 at Leeuwenborch C64. Erik Swyngedouw is Professor of Geography at Manchester University. His research interests include urban political-ecology, hydro-social conflict, urban governance, democracy and political power, and the politics of globalisation. His was previously professor of geography at Oxford University and held the Vincent Wright Visiting Professorship at Science Po, Paris, 2014. He recently co-edited (with Nik Heynen and Maria Kaika) In the Nature of the City (Rotledge, and (with Japhy Willson) The Post-Political and its Discontents: Spectres of Radical Politics Today (Edinburg University Press, 2014) and is author of Social Power and the Urbanization of Nature (OP 2004) and Liquid Power (MIT 2015), a book that focuses on water and social power in 20th century Spain. His forthcoming books are Promises of the Political (MIT 2018) and, co-edited with H. Ernstson, Urban Political Ecology in the Anthropo-obscene (Routledge 2017)

Interrupting the Anthropo-Obscene: The De-politicized Politics of the Anthropocene as Immuno-biopolitical Fantasy

Erik Swyngedouw

In the presentation, we shall use ‘the Anthropocene’ to denote the proposed new geological era during which humans have arguably acquired planetary geo-physical agency, a term increasingly mobilized by both geologists and Earth Systems scholars. While recognizing a wide-ranging and often contentious debate (see e.g. Castree 2014a, 2014b, 2014c; Hamilton, Bonneuil and Gemenne 2015), we hold that the Anthropocene is a deeply depoliticizing notion that off-stages political possibilities. This off-staging unfolds, we contend, through the creation of what we refer to as ‘AnthropoScenes’, the mise-en-scene of a particular set of narratives that are by no means homogeneous, but which broadly share the effect of off-staging certain voices and forms of acting. Our notion of the Anthropo-obScene then, is our tactic to both attest to and undermine the performativity of the depoliticizing stories of ‘the Anthropocene’.

First, we examine how the AnthropoScenes can be viewed as a set of stages that have constructed and engaged the signifier ‘Anthropocene’. While internally fractured and heterogeneous — ranging from those promoting geo-engineering and Earth System science as an immunological prophylactic to our situation to interlocutors developing more-than-human and object oriented ontologies in search of a new politics — there is an uncanny effect of placing things and beings, human and non-human, within a particular relational straightjacket that does not allow for a remainder or constitutive outside. Second, building on post-foundational political thought, we shall articulate in theoretical terms what is being censored and rendered obscene, and how foregrounding this may hold possible paths toward re-politicization. We mobilize theoretical perspectives that have attempted to cut through the last decades of pervasive de-politicization. These views understand the political in terms of performance and, in an Arendtian manner, as constituted through a space of appearance, a performative public acting-in-common that politicizes subjects and spaces (Arendt 1958: 199). From this perspective, the political is understood as forms of acting subtracted from what is gestured to hold socio-ecological constellations together. In other words, the political is manifested in forms of excessive or supernumerary acting that exceeds the internal relational assemblage from which it emerges.



Seminar: Towards a post-apocalyptic anthropology: harbouring the prospect of life

Towards a post-apocalyptic anthropology: harbouring the prospect of life

Seminar on the occasion of the retirement of dr. A. Arce (SDC)

Tuesday, April 24, 2018, 9:45 – 17:30

Wageningen, Forum C0314

Calling for a post-apocalyptic anthropology is a provocative move to critically discuss so-called crisis of governance, failures of public policy, bio-power effects that have been with us at least since WWII and that are said to bring about an ecology of destructive practices. Are the ways in which these phenomena experienced and perceived part of apocalyptic modes of existence in the making or are they already with us? If they are already with us, what is the effect of these apocalyptic modes of existence on living entities? Are apocalyptic situations revealed through human beings increasingly experiencing insecure and alienated modes of life or are such apocalyptic situations a contemporary expression of diminishing social interactions brought about in and through bio-power? See the complete mission statement for this seminar here.

Preliminary seminar program:

09:45 – 10:15    Reception and coffee

10:15 – 10:25     Opening by dr. Gerard Verschoor

10:25 – 10:45    Words to the retirement of dr. Alberto Arce by prof. Bram Büscher and prof. Han Wiskerke

10:45 – 11:15     Prof. Mara Miele: Animals and changing consumption practices (title t.b.c.)

11:15 – 11:30      Coffee break

11:30 – 12:00    Prof. Terry Marsden (title t.b.a.)

12:00 – 13:00    Lunch

13:00 – 13:30    Words to the retirement of dr. Alberto Arce by prof. Norman Long (emeritus) and prof. Leontine Visser (emeritus)

13:30 – 14:00    dr. Alberto Arce: Towards a post-apocalyptic anthropology

14:00 – 15:30    Workshop Session 1

15:30 – 15:45     Coffee break

15:45 – 17:00      Workshop Session 2

17:15 – 17:30      Closure by dr. Gerard Verschoor

17:30                    Drinks

Seminar: Co-creating Research

Co-creating Research Seminar

Tuesday, 10 April 2018, 14:00 – 17:00

Wageningen, Gaia C0093

Co-creation has become a buzzword in many social science disciplines and business as well as in tourism studies. Given the prominence of co-creation, surprisingly little discussion has evolved about its implications for research practices and knowledge production as well as what challenges there are for fulfilling the promise of co-creation in research. Continue reading