Just Transitions: How to manage social impacts?

A dialogue on justice in transitions related to climate change and food systems.

Organised by Wageningen University & Research
Venue Online (Zoom)


The “Just transition” concept is increasingly used in policy documents. It generally refers to incorporating elements of social justice into transformations towards sustainability. This includes the development of climate change adaptation pathways, the energy transition and deliberate initiatives to transform food systems.

Amongst policy makers and practitioners there is increasing awareness of possible synergies and trade-offs that can happen as a result of interventions towards climate change adaptation and sustainable food systems. For instance, Just Transition is not only about re-skilling coal mine workers to find alternative jobs as part of the energy transition. Deliberate transitions in one country or with one target group can have (positive or negative) impacts on another group or in other countries. These impacts can be intended or unintended, or even unconscious. Human rights can be violated or opportunities for transformation can be missed. Justice therefore needs to be an inherent part of the way transitions are designed, planned and governed.

In the research project 'Just Transitions' WUR aims to develop a framework and approach to operationalise the 'just' concept, and test this framework in practice. The project design is deliberately based on the principles of co-creation and dialogue. The dialogues will be mainly used to make sense of ongoing practices and will help to further build the framework. That is why you are warmly invited to join this dialogue on Just Transition.


The purpose is to identify positive and negative impacts of transitions on different stakeholders and how conditions can be created to make sure no one is left behind.


Participants will gain insights into the realities of different stakeholders involved in transition processes in India (energy transition, with resource people from WRI India and partners) and tentatively Bangladesh (food system) or South Africa (global energy transition – Manganese mining) to be confirmed.


Practitioners, scientists, activists, policy makers whose work is related to climate change adaption or food systems, with expertise, ideas and / or experience about matters that could be named as just transition.


10:00 Welcome words, introduction to the project and the topic and who is in the room. Thies Reemer and Ingrid Coninx, WUR
10:20 Energy Transition in India: Pavagada Solar park – social impacts, insights and possible ways forward
- Presentation by WRI India
- Ideas and feedback from participants on managing social impacts
10:50 Improving Dhaka’s food system
- Presentation by Dhaka Food Systems Bangladesh
- Ideas and feedback from participants on managing social impacts
11:10 Break
11:20 Group work in break out rooms: how can conditions be created to make sure no one is left behind in the transition?
11:50 Reflections from each group and case presenters
12:20 Wrap up
12:30 Closure