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Report: Second Indo-German Dialogue on Green Urban Practices held in Freiburg

Group photo of the Indo-German Dialogue 2018 participants. Photo credits: Malin Praktiknjo, 2018.


IGCS in collaboration with Freiburg University conducted the second IGD on Green Urban Practices from 8 – 10 November. The event was funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) with travel bursaries from the German Consulate General in Chennai.

With this year’s focus on the theme “Education, Learning, Training and Awareness for Sustainable Development” the three day event attracted close to 40 academic and non-academic delegates from India and Germany. Almost half of these had already attended the first dialogue event in March 2017 allowing for many participants to continue their discussions and connections while at the same time expanding the network to new partners.

Chella Rajan, IGCS Area Coordinator Landuse at IIT Madras, welcomed the participants on behalf of the IGCS. The first day saw an overview of the concept and objectives of the IGD series by its initiator Dr. Christoph Woiwode. Besides Dr. Jenny Lay-Kumar who as co-convenor introduced the audience to urban food and gardening in Freiburg, two invited speakers presented on natural farming in India (Dr. Sujatha Byravan) and education and learning for sustainable development in India (Dr. Milind Brahme). The remaining day was used to allow for intensive sharing and listening to each other’s work and activities in two parallel sessions. This activity yielded in rich insights across sectors like urban farming as well as educational and pedagogical activities in places like Delhi, Chennai, Pune or Cologne, Bochum and Freiburg.

Day two built on these insights to form thematic working groups around emerging core themes such as agro-food systems, cross-cultural and traditional knowledge systems, participation and governance, and carrying forward this network. The last day was devoted to exposure visits exploring Freiburg city, the Lokhalle innovation centre and two urban gardening initiatives in the famous Vauban neighbourhood.
This IGD has not only intensified existing networks but also increased bilateral expressions of intent to collaborate across the two countries and within. We are already looking forward to the third IGD which will be hosted and co-convened by Bharatiya Vidyapeet Environment Education Research Centre and the Centre for Environmental Education in Pune.



For further details contact Dr. Christoph Woiwode, external IGCS Visiting Professor (woiwode@igcs-chennai.org).

You can download the full report here.