Footprint 2021: Taking steps towards a more positive and sustainable future

Victoria Prowse and Matthew Warren

Footprint was supposed to be a one off. In 2018, we aimed to bring people together with a lineup of outstanding speakers in an open forum to discuss environmental action in Durham. Little did we know that out of that first event, a group of astonishing Durham students would decide to take the next step and organise Footprint 2019. And what a job they did! Held in Durham Town Hall, with a keynote speech from Sir David King, ex-chief scientific advisor to the UK Government! (Read more about the 2019 event in this blog)

Four years after it all started, Footprint is now an annual event, still organised by Durham students and alumni, and a staple of the Durham environmentalist’s calendar. This year there’s one difference: we’re going online!

Footprint is guided by a conviction that positive change in the face of environmental crises is possible, that we can all make a difference, and that doing so is urgent – that this is an emergency. We aim to provide a forum for anyone to learn and join a conversation about what positive steps can be taken towards a more sustainable future. Footprint is about inviting people to write the story of the future of their world and this is where you come in: what happens next?

What’s Happening at Footprint 2021?

Over the two days, speakers will be addressing varied topics; business, healthcare, conservation, activism, and politics and governance all have a role to play in creating an environmentally sustainable society and our lineup of outstanding speakers address all of these and more – have look at our full programme

Day 1 – Friday 11 June

  • Zero Carbon Britain on Wicked Problems (and solutions!) for zero-carbon; 
  • Sustainable Healthcare panel;
  • Durham’s own Prof. Geoff Moore on environmental business ethics; 
  • The National Trust post-pandemic with Mike Innerdale
  • David Saddington (Durham Alumnus and head of the UK DEIS’s COP26 Nature Campaign) on hopes for COP26
Paul Allen, of Zero Carbon Britain, will open Footprint 2021 by considering what it will take to get to net zero.

Day 2 – Saturday 12 June

  • Conflict and Conservation with Dr Isla Hodgson
  • A workshop on activism without burnout with Dr Aaron Thierry
  • Climate Justice 101 (also with Dr Thierry!)
  • And finally, a workshop on imagination, utopian thinking, and her recent film, Island Utopias, with Footprint founder Sarah Mercer followed by a forum for developing ideas for action!
Excerpt from Sarah Mercer’s recent film Island Utopias

Amongst all of this, there will be time to chat with speakers and other attendees; in the end, Footprint is all about conversations that connect us to the challenges our world faces, to our role in creating change, and to the people around us who can walk with us towards a more sustainable future.

We’d love you to join us, so….

have a look at the programme,

book your free tickets,

connect with us, and spread the word! 

Victoria Prowse and Matthew Warren

Victoria is a Geography graduate and Matthew cofounded Footprint in 2018 and is completing his PhD in the  Department of Music.

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