Advancing transformations to more sustainable and equitable futures. Read more.

Projects & outputs

Academic-activist co-produced knowledge for environmental justice

Extractive activities, including mineral, biomass and fossil fuel extraction, cause wide-ranging social and environmental impacts, from the depletion of natural resources to social tensions and conflicts through threats to territories, communities and lifestyles. Community responses to these activities call into question who has the right to decide and whether any one vision of development should be imposed over others. At times these responses also present alternative perspectives on well-being.

The ACKnowl-EJ project analysed the transformative potential of community responses to extractivism and alternatives born from resistance. The project aimed to co-produce knowledge that could empower communities to push for change and that was geared towards the needs of social groups, advocates, citizens and social movements.

Hemalkasa anti-dam rally/Photo: Ashish Kothari
EJOLT worldwide

The ACKnowl-EJ network conceived of social movements struggling for environmental justice as potential agents in radical transformation, considering that the role of resistance to environmental exploitation and ecological violence, often manifested through ecological conflicts, was under-examined. The project included perspectives from activism, political ecology, social movement studies, environmental justice and conflict transformation praxis and theory to understand how social change that prefigures more sustainable practices emerges from social movements and how alternatives emerge from them. Ten case studies were carried out in India, Bolivia, Turkey, Venezuela, Lebanon, Belgium, Canada and Argentina.

The project made it possible to expand and improve the Atlas of Environmental Justice, developing, in particular, special content and analysis on environmental justice in the Arab region. The project developed two conceptual frameworks, the Alternatives Transformation Format and the Conflict Transformation Framework, that guided the field work and analysis on just transformations. A book is being produced which will bring together the case studies, the frameworks and the theory of transformation developed in the project into a comprehensive analysis of just transformations to sustainability from the ground up, which should be ready for publication by 2021.

Read more on the ACKNOWL-EJ website.

Highlights of ACKNOWL-EJ outputs

Collective outputs

Innovative frameworks to approach transformations

Key case study outputs

Key Environmental Justice ATLAS outcomes

Work based on the Environmental justice Atlas that was supported by ACKnowl-EJ has
resulted in key scientific and non-scientific publications in high-impact journals:


Dr Leah Temper
Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona, Spain
[email protected]

Mr Ashish Kothari
Kalpavriksh Environment Action group, India
[email protected]

This network received seed funding under phase 1 of the Transformations to Sustainability programme.