CEFO The Center for Environment and Development Studies Research Forum

Who We Are

CEMUS Research Forum is a transdisciplinary research forum open to researchers and PhD-students at Uppsala University, SLU and other universities in Sweden. CEFO activities focus on environment, development and sustainability studies. We collaborate with other universities and departments to enrich research education through our transdisciplinary Sustainability Seminars, PhD courses, workshops, lectures and field trips. CEFO was initiated by PhD-students, staff and students at CEMUS in 2002 as a research school between Uppsala University and Swedish Agricultural University (SLU).

CEFO is mainly driven by PhD students from across uppsala university, along with senior faculty support. Our affiliated members and other participants are from diverse departments and disciplines, bringing multiple perspectives to the discussions. We encourage conversations framed by problem, not by discipline.

To become a formally associated  PhD student see the affiliation agreement and contact the coordinator lakin.anderson@fek.uu.se. Researchers and Master students are kindly requested to send a short mail of interest.

Supported by

Uppsala University Climate Change Leadership Node and NRHU Natural Resources and Sustainable Development Programme

CEMUS Centre for Environment and Development Studies, an interdisciplinary center for education, outreach, and research at Uppsala University and Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU).

What We Do

Twice per month we host a research seminar series featuring talks and workshops from CEFO members and invited speakers. We run skills workshops and organise field trips. We also initiate and run student-driven PhD courses in collaboration with faculty and offer opportunities for getting feedback for your research from a wider audience. We welcome new members from all departments who hope to broaden their horizons. Seminars, workshops and events are open to any interested PhD students, researchers, master’s students and interested public.

Spring 2020 Schedule

The interdisciplinary seminar takes place Tuesdays 10:15-12:00 twice per month during term time in the Baltic Library, at the Department of Earth Sciences,  Villavägen 16. We end at 12.00 and go on to eat lunch together. The first and last seminar each term includes planning discussions where PhD-students and researchers suggest future activities. The seminar is hosted by affiliated CEFO Members and supported by CEMUS, NRHU and the Climate Change Leadership Node at Uppsala University.

Time Title Location


Feb 4


Opening Meeting for semester – Affiliates and participants Baltic Library Room, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department


Feb 18


Open Workshop Hosted by CEFO –


Critical sustainability input for Uppsala University’s development of their ‘Vision 2050’ plan.

Conveners, Helena Fornstedt and Lakin Anderson. In Collaboration with Official Project Group for UU  Vision.

FB event: https://www.facebook.com/events/182438952821404/

CEMUS Library


Mar 3


Research Seminar


Isak Stoddard, Phd Student and Researcher, Natural Resources and Sustainable Development, Climate Change Leadership Node,Uppsala University

“A factor of two: how the mitigation plans of ‘climate progressive nations’ fall far short of Paris-compliant pathways”

Baltic Library Room, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department


Mar 17


Research Seminar


Sven Widmalm, Professor at Dept. History of Science and Ideas, Uppsala University

“Interdisciplinarity: historical reflections and  reflexions on contemporary policy”


Zoom Meeting

(Link via email)



April 7


Research Seminar [CANCELLED]


Foad El Gohary, PhD Student and Researcher, Industrial Technology and Management, Dept. Engineering Sciences, Uppsala University

“Demand side management in the electricity sector”

Zoom Meeting

(Link via email)



April 21


Research Seminar


Jennifer Hinton Stockholm Resilience Center

“Profit-Orientation and Post-Growth Economies: Connecting the Dots”


Zoom Meeting

(Link via email)

Tuesday, May 5


10:15 -12

Seminar: Cross-Disciplinary Concept Sharing

CEFO Affiliates, Members and Participants

Zoom Meeting

(Link via email)

Tuesday, May 19


10:15 -12

Artistic / Research Seminar

Helena Fonstedt, Institutionen för samhällsbyggnad och industriell teknik, Uppsala University

‘”Building climate transition narratives through sequential arts


Zoom meeting

(Link via email)


Tuesday, June 2


10:15 -13:30

Final Research Seminar (Guest TBC)



Affiliates meeting lunch. Constitutional voting and planning for next semester., New Coordinator selection.

Baltic Library Room, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department


Current Affiliates

Sachiko Ishihara, Dept. Social and Economic Geography

Lovisa Eriksdottir, Dept. Business Studies
Isak Orhlund, Dept. Civil and Industrial Engineering
Fouad El Gohary, Dept. Civil and Industrial Engineering
Matilda Andersson, Dept. Ecology and Genetics
Fabian Engel, Dept. Ecology and Genetics
Lakin Anderson, Dept. Business Studies

Holly Jayne Redman, Dept. Chemistry – Ångstrom Laboratory

Isak Stoddard, Dept. Earth Sciences, NRHU/Climate Change Leadership Node

Fatemeh Johardi, Dept. Civil and Industrial Engineering

Helena Fornstedt, Dept. Civil and Industrial Engineering

Venugopal Reddy Thandlam, Dept. Earth Sciences


Autumn 2019 Seminar and Workshop Schedule

lakin.anderson@fek.uu.se to be placed on our mailing list

Time Title Location
Sep 10



Autumn start-up meeting, Welcome!


Discussion of plans and activities for CEFO group, new affiliated PhD students signing on.

Baltic Library, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department

Sep 24 10:15-12

Derk Loorbach


Research Seminar

Director of DRIFT and Professor of Socio-economic Transitions at the Faculty of Social Science, both at Erasmus University Rotterdam. Derk is one of the founders of the transition management approach as new form of governance for sustainable development.

Baltic Library, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department
Oct 8



Affiliates and Participants


CEFO Meeting

Concrete projects, CEFO guidelines and statutes, various proposed activities, updates on CCL course.

Baltic Library, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department
Oct 22



Klas Palm


Seminar and Discussion

Coordinator of Uppsala University Sustainability Initiatives will talk about what they are doing for sustainability research at UU, and how it is being envisioned, structured, funded, etc.

Baltic Library, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department
Nov 12



Keri Facer


Workshop (Theme TBA)

Keri Facer, Zennström Professor in Climate Change Leadership at Uppsala University, Prof. of Educational and Social Futures at Uni of Bristol , UK

‘Values in Academia’ Skills workshop for young scholars interested in sustainable development and crossing disciplinary boundaries

Kollaboratoriet, Östra Ågatan
Nov 26 10:15-12 CEFO Seminar, projects meeting, and spring planning


Incl. Short Presentation from Climate Existance Conference organisers

Baltic Library, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department
Dec 10


10:15 -12

Interdisciplinary PhD Seminar, double talk!


1.Holly Jayne Redman, Depart. of Chemistry.

Building Hydrogenase Mimics as Potential Sources of Hydrogen as an Energy Carrier

2. Tobias Olofsson, Dept. Sociology

Turning Rocks Into Money – Predictions and Uncertain Futures in Swedish Mineral Exploration

Baltic Library, NRHU, Earth Sciences Department


Our Internal Rules and Procedures Document

CEFO Rules and Procedures as of Spring 2020


Interdisciplinary PhD Courses

Autumn 2019  Climate Change Leadership: Power, Politics and Structures

Previous Courses

PhD students associated with CEFO have proposed, developed and coordinated a variety of interdisciplinary courses over the years.

Click here for overview of CEFO past courses

CEFO Anthologies and Publication Series


The activities, courses and discussions at CEFO has resulted in some publications, namely these CEFO Anthologies. We are also currently working on an anthology “Co-creating actionable science: reflections from the field”.

Friman, E. and Gallardo F., G. L., eds. 2010. Politicized Nature: Introduction’ in Politicized Nature. Global Exchange, Resources and Power. Uppsala: Cefo Publication Series Number 2. Pp. 9-17.

Gallardo Fernández, G. 2008. From Seascapes of Extinction to Seascapes of Confidence: Territorial Use Rights in Fisheries in Chile: El Quisco and Puerto Oscuro. Stockholm: Co-Action Publishing.

Schulz, S.L. ed., 2007. Ekokritik: Naturen i litteraturen – en antologi, CEMUS Skriftserie Nr. 1. Uppsala: Centrum för miljö- och utvecklingsstudier.

What does it mean to be an affiliated PhD student?

Would you like to become an affiliated student or join the e-mail list? 

E-mail: lakin.anderson@fek.uu.se

Visons and Values of CEFO

– Created by members during the Gotland Retreat January 2019 –

What CEFO adds to the experience of being a young researcher

  • Meet and connect with PhD students from other departments and disciplines
  • Broaden your perspectives and research
  • To have an insight into how postgraduates operate in different fields other than my own
  • Opportunity for reflexive learning about your own research communication to a wider audience
  • Experience of running PhD courses, workshops and events
  • Chances to learn about how to be constructive to other people’s research
  • Peer-based support on research ideas, writing, skills, courses, and career
  • To learn how to produce a journal and what it means to be on an editorial team
  • Support for the research process – e.g. technical details, how to apply to grants, how research ideas originate, the process of publication
  • Fun! During the ‘urgh’ times in our areas, this environment could play a supportive role

What is our role within the university? What is the university not doing that we are doing?

  • Create meeting places across disciplines and departments
  • To challenge the narrow specialization of disciplines and stress the need for many different perspectives
  • Initiate conversations across boundaries with a focus on environmental/climate change issues
  • Peer-supported feedback on your work in progress from wide perspectives
  • PhD student-led education. Courses developed from needs and perspectives of PhD students. Create and run courses that aren’t limited by a specific discipline.
  • A bottom-up / grassroots network
  • Bring together answers to questions that aren’t raised yet
  • Challenge subject hierarchy and recognize we have different approaches to the same issue

Why does the world need transdisciplinarity / interdisciplinarity? 

  • Because research fields are getting more and more specialized
  • Global, long-lasting decisions need a common ground, i.e. need to be accepted by people from different disciplines
  • Everything on Earth is connected. The world is getting more complex
  • Inter-disciplinary approaches breeds creativity and new innovation – e.g. RADAR
  • To challenge public misconception on highly relevant topics (such as what climate change actually is) through using data expertise from a wide range of disciplines
  • Because not considering other perspectives is how we cause more problems with proposed solutions
  • The thinking that ‘caused’ global challenges might not solve it
  • The thesis is bigger than your department. “Limited by the problem not by the discipline”
  • Translate concerns into shared aims