The Realisation of Human Rights in Societies Beyond Growth

Funded by the British Academy and Wellcome trust.

  • Tue 30 Apr - Wed 1 May 24


  • Colchester Campus

  • Event type


  • Event organiser

    Human Rights Centre

  • Contact details

    Law and HRC Events and Communications Team

The Human Rights Centre is pleased to announce that it will host a conference, funded by the British Academy and the Wellcome Trust, on ‘The Realisation of Human Rights in Societies Beyond Growth.’ 

Economic growth plays a central role in driving climate and socio-ecological crises, primarily due to the ongoing exploitation of natural resources for consumption. Despite its common association with material prosperity, economic growth is also tied to increasing levels of wealth and other forms of inequality, often at the expense of social and environmental justice. 

Amidst concern that the prevailing ‘green growth’ model advanced under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development will not avert these environmental and socioeconomic crises, increasing attention has been given to alternative post-growth approaches such as degrowth, buen vivir, doughnut economics, and ecological swaraj. These post-growth proposals have paid limited attention to human rights, however the international human rights community is beginning to explore human rights implications of these visions. 
Bringing together internationally leading scholars and practitioners from the human rights and post-growth fields, the British Academy conference 'The Realisation of Human Rights in Societies Beyond Growth,' hosted by the Human Rights Centre, University of Essex, will explore these emerging intersections between human rights and post-growth proposals.  The goals are to unpack the relationship between economic growth and human rights; identify opportunities and challenges for human rights in post-growth strategies; and explore pathways to realising human rights while living within planetary boundaries.


The final agenda is available here (.pdf).

Our keynote panel speakers are: Kate Raworth (author of Doughnut Economics; University of Oxford); Professor Jules Pretty (University of Essex), Professor Olivier De Schutter (UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, University of Louvain), and Professor Annalisa Savaresi (University of Stirling).


The conference will be run as a hybrid event. 

For in-person participation, there is a day rate, but we can offer a free place for 15 participants from academia, with PhD candidates particularly encouraged to apply.

  • To apply for a free place, please email jrbuen@essex.ac.uk by 15 March 2024, stating your name, institutional affiliation and position, and a summary of how the event relates to your research.
  • To attend in person, please get in touch with us directly at lawhrcevents@essex.ac.uk, the deadline to book your place is 14 April 2024. The day delegate rate is £32.75 per day/ £65.50 for both days, this includes lunch and refreshments. Please let us know if you have any dietary requirements when booking your place. Please note spaces are now limited.
  • To attend on Zoom, please register for each day, day one and/or day two. Please submit questions in advance of the event.
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