Guests and contributors – ClimateExistence 2021

Guest and contributors will be posted as they are confirmed. May be subject to change up until the start of the conference.

Sofia Ahlberg [Vice Dean, Faculty of Languages and Associate Professor, Literature and Pedagogy, Department of English, Uppsala University – Sweden]

I am the Vice Dean of the Faculty of Languages at Uppsala University, Sweden, with responsibility for education and collaboration, and Associate Professor in Literature and Pedagogy at the Department of English, also at Uppsala University. I teach and research on contemporary literature, pedagogy, and ecocriticism. My most recent book Teaching Literature in Times of Crisis (Routledge, 2021) has just been published. My other publications include another monograph Atlantic Afterlives in Contemporary Fiction (Palgrave, 2016) as well as numerous chapters and articles in edited collections and journals, most recently in The Handbook of Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature and Science (Palgrave, 2020) and Teaching the Literature of Climate Change (MLA, forthcoming). I contributed to a highly original edited collection called Loanwords to Live With: An Ecotopian Lexicon (Minnesota UP, 2019) and my essay on the Swedish word “fotminne” can be read about in “Parlör for ett vettigare sätt att tala om klimatet” (SvD, 2020) as well as in “The Search for New Words to Make us Care about the Climate Crisis” in The New Yorker, 2020.

Stefania Barca [Zennström Professor in Climate Change Leadership, Uppsala University – Italy, Portugal & Sweden]

I am a scholar in Environmental Humanities, with a strong commitment to environmental and climate justice. I develop my research and teaching at the intersection between academia and social movements – particularly those engaged in a Just Transition. For the past 12 years I have been investigating the environmental agency of labor and community organizations in Italy and internationally, taking into account both waged industrial work and unwaged care work. My latest book, Forces of Reproduction. Notes for a counterhegemonic Anthropocene (Cambridge University Press), released in November 2020, reflects the results of this research pathway. The book claims that the roots of the planetary crisis lay in the deep structural inequalities and injustice that govern human societies from local to global scale, producing a systematic degradation of life systems, and the widespread violation of both human and nonhuman rights. Taking an historical approach, it sees the climate crisis as a result of intersecting patterns of colonialism, heteropatriarchy, exploitation of labor and human supremacy over the web of life – all converging towards a master model of modernity, which devalues and depletes reproduction and care. Feminist political ecologists call this “white/m-Anthropocene”. Consequently, my book calls attention towards the labour of caring for both humans and their biophysical environment, and suggests that this labour is what is keeping the world alive – so it is truly vital to recognize and support it.[/su_expand]

Nora Bateson [Filmmaker, Writer, Educator, Lecturer, President of the International Bateson Institute – Sweden & USA]

Nora Bateson, is an award-winning filmmaker, research designer, writer and educator, as well as President of the International Bateson Institute based in Sweden. Her work asks the question “How we can improve our perception of the complexity we live within, so we may improve our interaction with the world?”. An international lecturer, researcher and writer, Nora wrote, directed and produced the award-winning documentary, An Ecology of Mind, a portrait of her father, Gregory Bateson.

Jan van Boeckel [Professor Art & Sustainability, Centre Art & Sustainability, Hanze UAS, Artist and Film-maker – The Netherlands]

As of June 2020, dr Jan van Boeckel took up his position as professor Art & Sustainability at the Research Centre Art & Sustainability of Hanze UAS. He started his career as a cultural anthropologist. With the passing of time, Jan increasingly focused his attention on both his own developing artistic practice and on the teaching of art; two orientations that eventually converged into the role of artist-educator. Jan also has ample experience in performing research projects on the cutting edge of art and sustainability. Specializing himself in the new field of arts-based environmental education, he received his degree as Doctor of Arts in arts education at Aalto University, Helsinki, in 2013. In the past years he has worked in several Northern countries – among which Iceland, Sweden, Estonia and Finland. Now, at Hanze UAS at Groningen, Jan’s primary research interest is in how art can help us face the great challenges of our time, of which the ecological crisis arguably is the most pressing.

Alexander Crawford [Educator and Consultant – Sweden]

Alexander Crawford is a Stockholm-based educator and analyst, working as independent consultant and learning process designer. He works in global projects that explore interdependencies and complexity, in Sweden, Europe and China. For over ten years, he was research director and project director at the Tällberg Foundation, where he was lead program designer and project leader for the yearly global multi-stakeholder and cross-disciplinary Tällberg Forum (2005-2013). He is also an experienced analyst of economic, social and political trends, exploring the causes and consequences of global developments. Alexander is also involved in several non-profits and start-ups.

His session Listening to (outer and inner) nature at 7.45 on Saturday August 14 will feature an early morning nature walk with dialogue exercizes and reflection.

Andé Dutra [Course Coordinator CEMUS – Sweden & Brazil]

André is a Bachelor’s in International Relations, a Specialist in Public Administration and Master in Sustainable Development (Cemus/UU). He is currently in the second year of the Master’s degree in Sociology of Education (UU).
He moved to Sweden since 2016 and works as a Course Coordinator at CEMUS/Uppsala University, for different courses, since 2017. There he co-created the course “Sustainability and Development in Latin America – past, present, future”. He has been politically active in Brazil and a candidate for the local parliament in the capital city of Brasília, both in 2010 and 2014 and was member of the board of a political party and President of its Youth for several years. He worked as a permanent official of the Government of Brasilia for 11 years, in various institutions, aiming especially issues such as youth, labor and mobility/public transport. He continues to be active as a political activist in the field of environment and sustainability and movements for democracy and education in Brazil and Sweden. He is on the board of a youth television program run by the Brazilian Congress “Câmara Ligada” and member in the Brazilian Network for Sustainability Policy Action (Rede de Ação Política pela Sustentabilidade – RAPS Brasil). Finally, in 2021 he was elected to be in the board of Latinamerikagrupperna Sverige.

Åsa Elmstam [Artist – Sweden]

Åsa Elmstam, is an artist and a climate activist. She works with visualizing the climate crises and our over-consumption in exhibition form since 2007. Her background is a blend of silversmithing, jewelery art (Konstfack – Ädellab), art, crafts and studies In sustainable development in design (Sustanible Projects – University Tokyo Zokei, in Japan) etc. She is based at Södermalm in Stockholm.

Maud M.L. Eriksen [Senior lecturer, Department of Theology, Ethics and Philosophy of Religion, Uppsala University – Sweden]

Lecturer in Theological ethics at Uppsala University and organic gardener. In her teaching and research (at Uppsala university since 2005), Maud Eriksen has had a particular focus on virtue ethics and relational ethics. She has primarily worked in intersections between literature/film (often Science Fiction), theology and philosophy. She wrote her PhD dissertation (Oslo, 2005) on the literature and philosophy of Iris Murdoch, read through the lenses of Paul Ricoeur and Mikhail Bakhtin.

Taking a break from academia during the years 2017-2019, she trained as an organic gardener and has practiced in a garden centre as well as running a Community garden in the multi cultural area where she lives (Flemingsberg south of Stockholm). Regenerative agriculture and permaculture are particular interests as a gardener – but they tie well into her professional work as an ethicsist.

The combination of ethics and gardening has initiated a passionate interest for current and future research in environmental ethics, as well as sustainability issues with regard to individual, social and natural dimensions.

Eylem Ertürk [Researcher, artist and curator – Austria & Turkey]

Eylem Ertürk is a researcher, artist and curator living and working in Vienna and Istanbul. She has a background in social design, fine arts photography and cultural management. Since 2005 she has led/initiated/worked in several projects and art institutions in Istanbul as a researcher, editor, curator or manager. She taught at Istanbul Bilgi University Arts and Cultural Management Programme and edited the Local Cultural Policies Handbook (2011). In her work at Anadolu Kültür (2010-2017), she focused on contemporary art and cultural dialogue and curated BAK: Revealing the City through Memory project, publications and exhibitions. She is the co-curator of the Memory and Arts in Turkey project (2018-2021) and co-editor of the book Talks on Memory and Arts 2020. She is a PhD candidate at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna with a focus on social memory, politics of the image and representation in public space. She is the founding member of the Shared Walks initiative that creates social encounters and critical spaces by walking in cities. Her current work investigates possibilities of artistic research on social issues and creative platforms for urban participation.

Anita Goldman [Journalist and Author – Sweden]

Anita Goldman is a well known Swedish writer of cultural criticism to some of the major Swedish daily newspapers. Her writing focuses on a critical investigation into some of Western cultures basic premises: whether it concerns the use and abuse of Nature (as in the case of the atomic bomb), the ostracism of the female voice in cultural history and the fear of female bodies and desires or the materialistic focus that precludes a spiritual knowledge and awe in relating to the world. Anita Goldman is an ardent vegetable gardener in her house in southern Sweden, where she also leads writing workshops.

Martin Hedberg [Meteorologist and Change agent – Sweden]

Meteorologist. Change agent with special interests in scenarios, Complex adaptive systems and storytelling. Board member of Transition Network Sweden (Omställningsnätverket). Keynote speaker Climate change and extreme events. Self employed. Former Schibsted, National TV (SVT) and Swedish Air Force. Publications: The book “Extremt väder“, also in German “Extremes Wetter”.

Martin Hultman [Associate professor in science, technology and environmental studies at the Department of Technology Management and Economics, Chalmers University pf Technology – Sweden]

Why don’t we act when we have known the existential danger of climate change for over thirty years? Such are the questions Assoc. Prof. Martin Hultman deal with in his research, praxes and every day life. Hultman is widely published in energy and climate issues especially notable are the articles ‘The Making of an Environmental Hero: A History of Ecomodern Masculinity, Fuel Cells and Arnold Schwarzenegger’ and ‘A green fatwā? Climate change as a threat to the masculinity of industrial modernity’ then the books Discourses of Global Climate Change, Ecological Masculinities and Contending with the (m)Anthropocene. As part of his academic work he publish chronicles in a wide range of newspapers, give public lectures on contemporary politics and advice NGO:s as well as governmental agencies. Hultman leads three research groups analyzing ‘gender and energy’, ‘ecopreneurship in circular economies’ and ‘climate change denial’ at Chalmers University of Technology. He is currently writing on a book with the preliminary title Co-Creating Earth Peace. The Paths of Ecopedagogy, Ecological Masculinities and Rights of Nature.

Dan Jönsson [Author, Critic, and Essayist – Sweden]

Dan Jönsson is an author, critic, and essayist. Jönsson’s latest book Paradisgenen. Fyra utopiska horisonter (The Paradise Gene. Four Utopian Horizons), published by 20TAL Bok in 2020, is a stand-alone sequel to the 2014 book Kontinentaldrift – om de nya murarnas Europa efter finanskrisen (Continental Drift – On the New Walls of Europe After the Financial Crisis). In The Paradise Gene Jönsson leaves his idyllic life in Örtofta, south of Sweden, in search of the dying spark of the utopian dream. His travels take him to the exploitative building projects of Dubai, Guangzhou and the remains of communist China, the forgotten utopian societies of Los Angeles, and the remnants of Soviet Russia. In an age of neoliberal global exploitation, is the dream of a socially just and environmentally sustainable civilization still possible?

Helena Fornstedt [PhD candidate, Department of Civil and Industrial Engineering, Uppsala University and CEFO affiliate – Sweden]

Helena Fornstedt is a PhD candidate at the Department of Civil and Industrial Engineering at Uppsala University and an affiliated member of the Cemus Research Forum, CEFO. She has a background in civil engineering and business economics, and her research focus is mainly on innovation and resistance to innovation. In her research she explores the tendency in contemporary narratives to always frame innovation as part of the solution – never part of the problem. Helena is interested in exploring different ways to make research reach beyond the ivory tower of academia. She has a monthly column in the local newspaper Örnsköldsviks Allahanda where she writes about transition, sustainability, innovation, science and technology. She is also part of the climate comic project (, aiming to present climate-related research from multiple academic disciplines in a comic book.

Rickard Fornstedt [Illustrator, Designer and Graphic Storyteller – Sweden]

Rickard Fornstedt is a freelance illustrator, designer and graphic storyteller with a university degree in Graphic Storytelling and Sequential Arts from the University of Gävle. He is interested in communicating scientific research through illustrated narratives, and currently, he is involved in several projects in that area. One of them is the Climate Comic Project ( that aims to present a narrative about climate change and transition away from fossil dependence in a comic book based on scientific research. His work has, among other things, received honorable mentions by the Swedish Comics Association and the Centre for Energy Ethics at the University of St Andrews. On an unrelated note, he is an incurable fantasy geek and likes to revel in “nerd culture”.

Mariam Carlsson Kanyama [International environmental law and earth jurisprudence – Sweden]

Mariam Carlsson Kanyama, with a background in international environmental law and earth jurisprudence (legal aspects of rights of Nature and Earth centered law) decoloniality and intersectional climate justice. She recently participated in the work on the rights of Lake Vättern as one of the members of the lake Vättern case team and legal advisor to the European tribunal in defense of aquatic ecosystems, Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature.

Kieli [Musical artist – Sweden & Finland]

Sylvan and sincere, Kieli’s music is made with love for old and acoustic instruments, and is rooted in the Nordics and Karelian minority culture. Her cinematic and heartfelt indie-folk invites the listener to a soundscape that breaks barriers — between human and animal, nature and culture, past and present — and offers a liberating space that emboldens personal expression and rest, whilst raising societal questions and challenging the status quo.

Kieli has released music in Swedish, English, Finnish and Karelian, and her songs have reached an international audience. Behind the stage name Kieli is Swedish-Finnish-Karelian singer, multi-instrumentalist and performer Elin Pöllänen. Elin’s songwriting and artistic expression draw much inspiration from Karelian traditions such as lamentation, and embody her background in animal advocacy and public health, as well as her work as a transdisciplinary researcher within the field of human-animal relations, post-anthropocentric governance, equity and sustainability.


Mikael Kurkiala [Author and Researcher, the Swedish Church, Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology at Uppsala University – Sweden]

Mikael Kurkiala is associate professor of Cultural anthropology at Uppsala University and researcher at the Church Office. He is the author of, among other titles, In every drum beat the earth’s pulse: the fear of differences of our times (Ordfront 2005) and When the Soul Goes into Exile: Modernity, Technology & the Sacred (Verbum 2019). He has also participated in several anthologies about the place of existential issues in contemporary society.

Ida Lod [Musician, Performer and Educator – Sweden]

Ida Lod is a musician, performer and educator who primarily works in interdisciplinary and crossdisciplinary settings. Through song, words, violin, movement and various ways of interaction with her surroundings she explores the connection between inner and outer worlds. Dadaistic Diva, Food of Love, Ofelia Reversed and Owl Woman are examples of some of her own productions where masking and demaskering are continuous explorations. As an educator Ida focuses on inspiring people to find their own creative voice through embodied voice-practices. Ida lives in Stockholm and was educated at the Academy of Music and Drama, University of Gothenburg.

Ayşem Mert [Associate professor and director, IMPRESS Program on Environmental Social Science, Stockholm University – Sweden & Turkey]

Ayşem Mert is associate professor and director of the IMPRESS Program on Environmental Social Science at Stockholm University, and an active member of Shadow Places and Earth System Governance Networks. Currently she is a senior research fellow at the Centre for Global Cooperation Research (GCR), where she investigates how the future world order and particularly environmental governance is being differently imagined after the COVID-19 pandemic. Thematically, she has been working increasingly on climate related political emotions such as urgency, loss, and fear, the fantasies these emotions produce regarding the future of human and more-than-human societies, and the ways in which practices and institutions are affected by them. She regularly collaborates with artists and non-scientific contributors to communal life and public debate in projects pertaining to climate change and environmental politics. Ayşem also has a personal history of environmental activism and progressive politics in Turkey.

Martin Modéus [Bishop of the Diocese of Linköping, Church of Sweden and Theologian – Sweden]

Martin Modéus (born 1962) is a Swedish theologian and bishop of the Diocese of Linköping in the evangelical Lutheran Church of Sweden.

Since many years, the Diocese has worked very actively for the environment and for sustainability which has resulted in a climate strategy with highly set goals. In the autumn of 2019, the bishops of the Church of Sweden jointly published an open letter, A Bishops’ Letter About the Climate, a piece of writing that highlights the spiritual and existential challenges – and possibilities – inherent in the climate crisis.

Texter och föredrag som biskop Martin Modéus skrivit

Maria Niwa [Singer-songswriter – Sweden]

Maria Niwa is a multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter from Stockholm. Working with live-sampling instruments and using field recordings, her music spotlights both process and presence.

In the live-sampling performance, the audience is able to trace the growth of the arrangement as it develops, resulting in a mindful listening to all its details. Accidents and errors, inevitable and human, turn into improvisations that become part of the composition.

With this mix of organic and digital, she creates ethereal sonic landscapes as well as activist anthems for change and community, for imagination as well as rooting down into the present.

Mattias Olsson [Filmmaker and Founder of Campfire Stories – Sweden]

Filmmaker Mattias Olsson is the founder of Campfire Stories, which is a film platform that aims to inspire change towards a future of ecological balance and human sanity. His background is that of a still photographer, which was his profession during the 13 years he lived in New York. Since he moved back to Sweden in 2007 he’s produced five films for Swedish television (SVT) and 14 films for Campfire Stories. He’s also a podcast producer and a lecturer. And an enthusiastic hobby-farmer, with a particular love for growing tomatoes and chilies.

Sohanur Raman [Youth activist and Chief Executive, Bangladesh Model Youth Parliament – Bangladesh]

Youth activist Sohanur Raman, Bangladesh, is the Chief Executive of a Youth-led organization titled Bangladesh Model Youth Parliament (Protiki Jubo Sangsad). He is one of the country’s key young climate advocates and he coordinates the largest youth network YouthNet for Climate Justice and founding member of the global youth movement Fridays for Future Bangladesh country chapter. He is also a changemaker of the SRHR for All Project implemented by the Global MenEngage Alliance.

Sohanur see Patriarchal structures and masculinity norms as important root causes to the climate crisis and to how the most poluting countries (rich countries in the global North) exploit the worlds most affected people and areas (MAPAs) such as Bangladesh.

The Bangladesh YouthNet for Climate Justice managed to stop establishment of several coal plants in Bangladesh.
The youth in the most affected areas in the world are not voiceless they are just not heard. Now more and more start to listen to them. We are proud and humble to have Sohanur as a contributor in the workshop Men, Masculinities and Climate Justice. Is changing masculine norms and behaviour an important key to end fossil fueled Patriarchy?

Ingrid M. Rieser [Host Forest of Though Podcast – Sweden & Norway]

Ingrid M. Rieser works with communication in audio, film and writing, and is the host of the Forest of Thought podcast. In her podcast and work Ingrid is interested in exploring how we can open up the possibilities for different modes of thinking and being in the world – modes that might help us live well together on planet Earth. Her background is in economics, sustainability, education and filmmaking. Her latest hobby obsession is bookbinding.

Pia Skoglund [Lecturer and Writer Ecophilosophy Karlstad University – Sweden]

Pia Skoglund has been teaching and writing from an Eco philosophic perspective for many years – mainly at Karlstad University but also in other fora. Her focus seems to circle around humans understood as diverse, manifold beings and the possibility for – and relevance of – meaningful emancipating action in relation to an evolutionary/ complex/active world. In that process, it seems that many of the philosophical questions that we thought already decided, must be re- investigated and concepts we have held for true since long, needs new consideration. And in the present crisis there is no time for quick philosophical or existential answers!
We can and need to talk and think about all this. If possible without being too sure about the quality and shape of our relation to the world. Experience is a great source of information in that process. For me that means forest and fishing, grandchildren and music, philosophy and dance, critical analysis – and synthesis, teaching, gardening, writing and cooking. As Emma Goldman might have said today: If all that´s not possible – it´s not my (r)-evolution!

Isak Stoddard [PhD Researcher, Natural Resources and Sustainable Development, Uppsala University – Sweden]

Isak Stoddard is a PhD researcher in Natural Resources and Sustainable Development with a particular focus on regional climate and energy transformations. Over the past decade he has worked in various capacities at the student-initiated Centre for Environment and Development Studies (CEMUS) at the University of Uppsala and Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. At CEMUS, his worked mainly focused on developing transformative and transdisciplinary approaches to higher education as a response to global environmental and societal challenges. Isak was also involved in the creation of a 10-year research-initiative on climate change leadership, centred around a series of visiting professorships at Uppsala University made possible by a donation from Zennström Philanthropies. He has an educational background in engineering physics and energy systems. A dual citizen of Sweden and the United States, he is now based in Uppsala, but enjoys frequent adventures to the Scandinavian mountains for skiing, wandering and climbing.

Pella Thiel [Educator and Activist – Sweden]

Pella Thiel is a maverick ecologist and activist who works with relational, systemic activism, change processes and leadership för a society in harmony with nature. She is a co-founder of the Swedish Transition Network, End Ecocide Sweden, Save the Rainforest Sweden and the swedish Network for Rights of Nature. She also teaches ecopsychology and is a part of the eco-psychology/art/activist NGO Lodyn. Pella coordinated the first three Rights of Nature Conferences in Sweden, is a part of the UN Harmony with Nature initiative and advisory board of the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature. Pella has an MSc in Ecology from Stockholm University with the thesis on rainforest restoration in Ecuador. She enjoys pigs, having her hands in the soil at the smallholding in the archipelago of Stockholm where she lives, whiskey and playing with people who truly love what they are doing.

Ceciel Verheij [Anthropologist and Translator – The Netherlands]

Ceciel Verheij has a background in Social Anthropology and currently work as a translator (fiction/non-fiction).

Vidar Vetterfalk [Psychologist and Project Manager, Masculinites and the Climate Crisis at MÄN, Men for Gender Equality – Sweden]

Vidar Vetterfalk is Certified Psychologist, International Project Manager and expert in Masculinites and the Climate Crisis at MÄN, Men for Gender Equality, Sweden He has been active in the feminist organisation MÄN since its inception in 1993, working with engaging boys and men for gender equality and ending men’s violence. For Vidar, as for MÄN, holding men accountable through close cooperation with women’s movements is central to the holistic work with primary violence prevention, the support to women survivors and the work with perpetrators. Vidar grew up on a biodynamic farm and he is passionate about the interlinkages between gender equality, the environment, the climate crisis, and how to engage more men to care together with others.

Organizational website: and On work with Men, Masculinities and the Climate Crisis:

May-Britt Öhman [Researcher, Centre for Multidisciplinary Studies on Racism, CEMFOR, Uppsala University – Sweden]

May-Britt Öhman is PhD, researcher and project leader of “Dálkke: Indigenous Climate Change Studies”, at the Centre for Multidisciplinary Studies on Racism, CEMFOR, Uppsala University, guest researcher at History, Luleå University of Technology, and leader of the Sámeednama friddja universitehta– Sámi Land Free University – initiative.

May-Britt Öhman is PhD in History of Technology, 2007, and Lule/Forest Sámi from Lule River/Julevädno, with ancestry also from the Torne river valley on the colonial border between Sweden and Finland.