Climate change research festival at Aberystwyth University looks ahead to COP26 challenges
From left to right: Professor Julian Agyeman; Professor Sarah Davies (Aberystwyth University); First Minister of Wales, Mark Drakeford MS; EU Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius; and Professor Milja Kurki (Aberystwyth University)
06 October 2021
Climate change experts will gather at Aberystwyth University for a week of events to discuss challenges ahead of the COP26 summit.
First Minister Mark Drakeford, EU Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius and environmental policy expert Professor Julian Agyeman will be among the keynote speakers at the University’s inaugural Festival of Research which begins on 18 October 2021.
In the run-up to the United Nation’s Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November 2021, the Aberystwyth festival will focus on key questions and debate potential solutions to the global climate and ecological crisis.
It will draw on a range of Aberystwyth University research projects aimed at tackling climate change and contributing to net zero carbon targets.
The week will also feature a one-day symposium entitled ‘AberClimate: Loss, Damage, Renewal’.
Speakers will be drawn from a range of disciplines, including Aberystwyth academics Professor Sarah Davies, Head of the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences and Professor Milja Kurki, EH Carr Chair at the Department of International Politics.
Further information about the Festival and details of how to book a free virtual or in-person place at the various events are available by going to http://aber.ac.uk/researchfest.
Professor Rhys Jones, Chair of the Aberystwyth University Festival of Research 2021, commented:
“Humanity and nature are facing a crisis in the context of climate change. We desperately need to take action to prevent some of the negative and far-reaching effects of climate change but it is also important that any action is based on original research being carried out in universities, including Aberystwyth University.
“One of the key aims of the Festival is to engage with local communities as well as sharing ideas and insights. We want to promote constructive dialogue between our University, our politicians and the public.”
Aberystwyth University Vice-Chancellor Professor Elizabeth Treasure added:
“Climate change is the biggest challenge facing our planet and as a University, we are committed to carrying out research which helps develop real-world solutions. As global leaders gather in the UK to discuss worldwide action, the Festival will help shine a light on the urgent issues ahead and provide a platform for rigorous debate across all disciplines.
“It’s very fitting that this is the focus of our first ever Festival of Research, given that we have a long and proud tradition of research excellence in fields that can make a real difference to global efforts to tackle the climate crisis.”
As well as lectures and panel discussions, local schools will carry out small climate change research projects which will be entered into a competition. A poetry event, Talwrn y Tywydd (a weather stomp), will also be hosted by the University's Department of Welsh and Celtic Studies.
This is the first Festival of Research of its kind to be held at Aberystwyth University, and events will be held both in-person and online this year. The aim is to make it an annual event in the institution’s calendar.