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Call for Papers Strong Sustainability
On December 7, 8 and 9, 2022, AFD is organizing its 15th International Research Conference on Development, on the theme “Strong sustainability: are Net Zero development trajectories sustainable?” A call for research papers has been launched to fuel discussions during the Conference's Academic Days. Applications are open until June 15, 2022.

From the Nationally Determined Contributions submitted at COP21 and the "Net Zero" target proposed by the IPCC in 2018 to the concept of just transition, the emerging demands for climate justice and the need to take biodiversity into account: sustainable development trajectories are at the heart of many debates. 

These debates highlight the complexity of development trajectories, which are multidimensional by nature. A lack of data in some parts of the world however, has created uncertainties, which call into question the robustness of certain development trajectories, whether on the economic, technological, social or political level. 

Development through the prism of strong sustainability

Given the limits of current theoretical approaches (such as the concept of weak sustainability or “net zero”), AFD is introducing the concept of “strong sustainability” to examine the construction and implementation of development trajectories that address the climatic, environmental, social, economic and financial issues that countries are facing, without excluding any of these issues.

The 15th International Research Conference held on 7, 8 and 9 December 2022 will be a chance to collectively reflect on questions such as: how to propose a coherent, multidimensional approach, taking into account the natural and macroeconomic constraints of countries in the North and the South? How to transpose this approach into public policies and to rethink structures of governance? Which financial instruments should be used to support these trajectories?

Launch of a dedicated call for papers

To answer these questions, the conference will consist of two Academic Days, on December 7 and 8, and an Open Discussion Day, on December 9. The selected papers, which should contain recommendations for action (public policy or recommendations for the private sector), will be discussed in parallel sessions during the Academic Days. The December 9 discussions will address issues such as the construction of strong sustainability trajectories, the ways in which this approach can feed into public policies, the role of finance and the financial instruments needed to support these trajectories.

Selected papers will be submitted to two academic journals: Ecological Economics and the International Journal of Political Economy.

This conference is part of the series of International Research Conferences on Development organized every two years by AFD. They bring together researchers and policymakers to reflect on central issues for development, such as “Commons and Development” in 2016 (link in French), “Inequality and Social Cohesion” in 2018 and “The Visible Hand: Development Banks in Transition” in 2020. 

  • The deadline for submission of long abstracts is Wednesday 15 June 2022 (23:59 CET).
  • For more information on submission guidelines and the calendar, please consult the call for research papers document here.