The conference will link various formats of work. Short explanations of the formats are given here for better understanding of the different formats of the conference among the participants.


Opening plenary: Connecting the dots of degrowth

Federico Demaria, Filka Sekulova, Szandra Koves, Vincent Liegey, Giorgos Kallis

30 August, 16h00 – 18h00, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Vincent Liegey

The opening event of the conference will provide a short introduction to the subject of degrowth, explaining how degrowth can represent a variety of aspects, from being an activist slogan to a social movement. It will also map the dots of degrowth worldwide, show the latest research on degrowth in global context, present the semi-periphery context of the conference and introduce the key themes and challenges of the conference. The opening session will be streamed online.


Opening panel of the conference: Degrowth in semi-periphery context

Danijela Dolenec, Zoltán Pogátsa, Giorgos Kallis

30 August, 18h30 – 20h00, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Szandra Koves

Renowned speakers will kick-off the discussions for the conference. The topic of the panel debate will be ‘Degrowth in semi-periphery context’, allowing us to understand the backdrop of the region in which the 5th International Conference on Degrowth takes place. Three visible panelists will be challenged by a participative moderator to place the conference into semi-periphery context and open the key issues that the conference will address during the subsequent days. Opening panel will be streamed.


Morning plenaries

The three central days of the conference will be kicked-off with a morning keynote presentation from a renowned speaker. The kick-off will contextualise the focus topics for the day (challenges, strategies, alliances) and open the key points for discussion during the day. The presentations will be of scientific character, inspiring and thought provoking. The presentations will be followed by a facilitated Q&A session. Morning plenaries will be streamed.


Science and uncommon thinking – Clive Spash
31 August, 9h30 – 11h00, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Filka Sekulova

Looking from the perspective of his guiding angle, science and uncommon thinking, Clive Spash will reflect on the topics of the day, trying to highlight the key challenges for degrowth:

  • Connections between growth-fetish of societies and the internal contradictions of capitalism / green growth
  • Exit from capitalism is not the same as exit from growth
  • Key underlying challenges for degrowth that cross-cut between various disciplines
  • Comparison of transition experiences in South America, Asia and Eastern Europe


From capitalist accumulation to a solidarity economy – Barbara Muraca
1 September, 9h30 – 11h00, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Tomislav Tomašević

In her keynote speech, Barbara Muraca will outline the key strategies for degrowth, specifically reflecting on the following topics, which are also the guiding topics of the third day of the conference:

  • Changing networks of production and consumption and driving political action
  • Degrowth as a fundamentally social challenge, involving structural changes of social practices, institutions and governance mechanisms and not just ‘fixes’
  • Need of new imaginaries and thoroughly different narratives; bringing the old concepts of community, trust, cooperation, solidarity into the new age
  • Connections between global or regional transition strategies
  • Austerity vs sustainable degrowth
  • Commoning, self-organizing, social solidarity and participatory principles of managing resources


Radical Alternatives to Unsustainability and Inequality: A Global Perspective – Ashish Khotari
2 September, 9h30 – 11h00, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Marta Conde

Ashish Kothari will build the basis for discussions of the fourth day of the conference, which will focus on building alliances for degrowth. In his speech, he will outline his views on the guiding topics for discussion of that day:

  • Degrowth and inequality from a global perspective
  • Lack of real democracy and equity (political and economic)
  • Positive transformations based on radical political and economic democracy; empowerment of voiceless groups of society; global village support to local communities in their struggles
  • Resistance to state and corporate power and top-down, elite-based decision-making
  • Alternative worldviews emerging from radical alternatives from the global South and North
  • Possibilities and prospects of global movements with a common framework of values/ethics


Parallel sessions

31 August, 1 September, 2 September, 11h30 – 13h00 and 14h30 – 16h00, different rooms in Corvinus 

The parallel sessions will run in three different formats:

1. Scientific special sessions. Researchers are encouraged to group their work into special sessions of 3-4 paper presentations reflecting similar concerns, or reporting on joint or related research outputs. Special session will have a minimum of 3 presenters, following closely what the overall session topic description outlines.

2. Research in action special sessions. These special sessions combine theoretical and research presentations with thematically related presentations from practice. They deliberately combine research and practice to overcome academic enclosures and allow dialogue connecting knowledge generated in degrowth thinking and interventions into environmental and social fabrics which correspond to this knowledge. Whilst the overall format and the leading presentations in these sessions are expected to adhere to minimal standards of academic communication, they can include other forms of presentation illustrative of the practices they are presenting.

3. Individual paper sessions. These are standard presentations of research findings, authored by one or more researchers. The sessions will present 3-4 individual papers. Ideally the papers will be grouped by a common topic.


Closing plenary: Polanyi, historical lessons, future challenges, semiperiphery

Gareth Dale, Szandra Koves, Mladen Domazet, Vincent Liegey

3 September, 10h00 – 12h30, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Lana Jurko

The closing plenary consists of an introductory lecture and a summary panel.
In the lecture Gareth Dale, reflecting on how the lessons from history of the semi-periphery can be used for degrowth of tomorrow. Drawing from his understanding of the work of Karl Polanyi, Gareth Dale will try to sketch Polanyi’s answers for the currently open degrowth challenges and issues raised at the conference.
Following his analysis, a short summary of conference will be provided by a group of people who closely followed the discussions at the conference, outlining the main open challenges for the future, both for degrowth research and action.


Evening plenaries

In open evening plenary debates, 3-4 visible panelists will address the key topics of the conference. The debates will be more of a political character, with the speakers reflecting on the hot issues and open questions from the degrowth fields, facilitated by an engaged moderator. The debates will be open for wider public and media, but also streamed online and in the Degrowth week venues.

Capitalism and (de)growth – Susan Paulson, Jennifer Hinton, Daniel O’Neill
31 August, 19h00 – 20h30, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: György Pataki

The panellists of the evening panel will be stimulated by an engaged facilitator to juxtapose their views on the key challenges for degrowth. The panellists come from different parts of the world, hence viewing the challenges from different socio-economic and cultural perspectives. Their discussion will meander along the key topics of the day, outlining the key degrowth challenges, such as the internal contradictions of capitalism, exiting growth and comparing the transition experiences and potentials in the parts of the world where they originate from.

Alliances between Global North and Global South – Beatríz Rodríguez Labajos, Miriam Lang, Ashish Kothari, Edgardo Lander
1 September, 19h00 – 20h30, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Ulrich Brand

Degrowth proposals are largely debated within and for the Global North. Despite strong dynamics and orientations towards economic growth and Western-style development in certain countries of the Global South, concepts like „buen vivir“, ‘post-growth’, swaraj and radical ecological democracy, and underlying these a wide range of practical approaches have emerged. They are promoted by social movements, critical intellectuals and sometimes even by NGOs, small firms and progressive persons within the state bureaucracy. Possible alliances for degrowth and post-growth between the Global North and South are discussed in this panel.

Is climate justice possible without degrowth? – Claudia Salerno Caldera, Jagoda Munic, Matthias Schmelzer
2 September, 19h00 – 20h30, Corvinus IVEa
Facilitator: Mladen Domazet

The panellists of the closing evening panel come from various spheres of work, from the world of diplomacy, activism and research, yet they all build an alliance for climate justice. They will be challenged by the facilitator to explore whether or not climate justice is possible at all without degrowth. On the way, they will touch upon the questions of lack of democracy, resistance, positive transformations, global climate agreement and alliances for climate justice.


Formats of the Degrowth Week

31 August, 1 September, 2 September, 16h00 – 19h00, different locations around the city

Every day a slot of three hours will be dedicated to opening a space for dialogue, deliberation, convergence, networking, practice, art and leisure. This structured, yet open and free time, will offer a wide variety of formats, which can be categorized into the following main groups:

  • book presentations: Presentation of a book, followed by a short discussion.
  • panel discussions and/or participatory discussions: Discussions in different formats (from lectures, followed by discussions to round tables) will be offered all around the week.
  • workshops: Practical and theoretical workshops, engaging participants in a variety of activities (from repairing bikes to elaborating on degrowth related concepts).
  • visit tour: several partner alternatives open their doors and invite you to visit them.
  • conviviality, art and degrowth: Every afternoon and evening, open events for conviviality will take place. Formats will include concerts, films, parties, exhibition, plays and performances. All events will be open for wider public and take place all around the city.

This time will be open for wider public, but the conference participants will have a priority in participating in formats, which might have limited number of places (e.g. visit to a farm).

Closing festival: Degrowth parade, Street festival, Jam Session and final party

3 September, 12h30 onwards, Kazinczy str. and Müszi

After the closing plenary, participants will gather to form a Parade that will march to Kazinczy street, where a set of activities will take place. A key feature of this street festival will be the call for de-motorisation of this vibrant, convivial and open-minded street.

The Street Festival will be followed by a Jam Session,  and later by a concert marking the final party at Müszi.