The Sustainable Futures in Africa (SFA) Network is an interdisciplinary collective that brings together researchers, practitioners, and communities of practice that acknowledge the situated and complex nature of sustainability. The Network aims to build understanding, research, and practice in socio-ecological sustainability in Africa.

Specifically, the Network includes the participation of researchers (from geography and earth sciences, community and adult education, applied social arts, health sciences, and engineering); third-sector organisations (working with environmental and social sustainability, with arts and cultural practice, and with community engagement in African contexts); and community stake-holders (living and working in areas of focus). Participants currently span the Uganda, Botswana, Nigeria, Malawi, and the UK, and the reach of the network continues to expand.

        NETWORK OBJECTIVES

THEORIES

To discover opportunities in the disparities between ontologies of the global north and the global south inherent in international collaborations and global endeavors

METHODS

To address the relationship between social, cultural, and ecological factors in sustainability in Africa through interdisciplinary research initiatives

IMPACT

To shape and support new opportunities for impact and inquiry that address locally-articulated, socio-ecological challenges

THE THREE LEGGED-STOOL

SFA is inspired by Nobel Peace prize winner Wangari Maathai’s concept of the “Three legged stool”. It is a metaphor for a stable society, with each leg representing sustainable environmental management, democratic governance, and a culture of peace. Each leg must be stable for the stool to stand, meaning the society will not be able to develop if any of the legs are not strong. SFA believes in this holistic approach. We believe that we live in an interconnected world, where we should not just focus on siloed sectoral approach, but work in interdisciplinary teams, looking at the whole picture.