On 5 and 6 November 2020 the online workshop “Combining a diversity of knowledge to meet the challenges of tomorrow” took place. The workshop was organised by the UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education and the School of Public Health at the University of São Paulo, Brazil. The objective of the workshop was to answer the question: how can we develop genuine participation in a critical, affective, and effective way and how can we combine knowledge from different sources?
By: Marco Akerman, Didier Jourdan and Goof Buijs, 2 November 2020
Many researchers talk about participation. To participate is to be part of something, that parties involved are on equal terms. However, asymmetries of power, privileges, knowledge, and information are always observed. This inevitably leads to inequalities, aware and unaware. How can we face these unfair inequalities to achieve genuine participation with the sharing of power and knowledge?
In order to do so, it is always necessary to explain which side you are on, in order to clarify necessary directions to re-frame knowledge and practices. This will help us to diversify the traditional “mono-culture” of knowledge. For this purpose, it is necessary to leave the comfort of our privileged position as a researcher behind in order to ‘learn to listen, interrogate and have a dialogue’. Our meeting aims to problematise what would be configured as a genuine, affective, and effective participation of children and young people. And how we can apply this in the formation, formulation, implementation, and evaluation of public policies.
We have an aspiration beyond the benefit that this Workshop will generate for us in terms of meeting and recognizing peers in other parts of the world with common values and meanings. We want to expand this network of people who are promoting and practicing genuine participation around the world. We hope this Workshop will produce useful elements for the elaboration of a ‘Multicentric Project for Mapping Genuine Experiences of Participation of Children and Youth in Public Policies’. After all, what would this ‘genuine participation’ of children and young people in public policies imply? We want to answer that question together! Therefore, let us use the workshop to share ideas and knowledge in a participatory way to get closer to that answer”.
Our speakers contributions
Combining a diversity of knowledge to meet the challenges of tomorrow. Setting the scene. Presentation by Didier Jourdan
Case study 1: Connecting knowlegde. What have we learned from the field about the successes and challenges of re-opening schools? Presentation by Nicola Gray
Case study 3: Innovative model: learning from the RezRIDERS extreme sports leadership mentoring program. Presentation by Rebecca Rae
Recording of the workshop – Part 1
Recording of the workshop – Part 2
Recording of the workshop – Part 3
- Introduction of the book “Another Knowledge is Possible: Beyond Northern Epistemologies”: Opening Up the Canon of Knowledge and Recognition of Difference by Boaventura de Sousa Santos, João Arriccado Nunes and Maria Paula Meneses (2007).
- Oliver Balch. ‘Buen vivir: the social philosophy inspiring movements in South America’, The Guardian, 4 February 2013
- Conceptualizing participation – the health of children and young people by Venka Simovska and Bjarne Bruun Jensen. WHO (2009).
- An open community by the UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education
- A Health Promotion Focus on COVID-19. Keep the Trojan horse out of our health systems: Promote health for ALL in times of crisis and beyond!