course for professionals
This is an introductory course for professionals on the contribution of globalised industry to systemic oppression, centring on the relationship between the Global North and the Global South through industry operations.
We begin by acknowledging that the dominant "sustainability" and "regeneration" discourses and methodologies we have today arise from a modern colonial narrative. We identify this as a mechanism of the One World, seeking a single story of progress, development and success, to trap us all into the certain death of incrementalisation through a narrow kaleidoscope of carbon-centric thinking. Net-zero systemic injustice. Eurocentric regeneration discourse further normalises the appropriation of indigenous knowledges, thereby trapping us all into repeating the same rhythms of extraction and dispossession.
This course does not seek to present a clear linear framework to decolonise corporate sustainability, or the masses of sustainability professionals in the corporate world. It rather seeks to create space to consider some unknown unknowns within Sustainability, Inc. - corporate sustainability, associated areas of academia, environmental activism - through understanding more clearly our long pasts and complex, confused contexts.
We create safe uncomfortable space for exploration of our own cultural evolution, and together find patterns within our current systems where the perspectives, narratives and behaviours that brought us here remain powerful and unchanged, even within the popular field that seeks to put humanity on a different course.
This course delivers a clear holistic perspective of globalised corporatisation, supply chains and their systemic impacts. Our sessions reframe our problematic economic paradigm from Global South perspectives and experiences. Through facilitated explorations, this course enables participants to connect the dots within their sectors and look with fresh, purposeful eyes at what systems change might feel like through us as collaborative individuals.
deep understanding of globalised industrial capitalism and its effects on the Global South
greatly improved ability to dance between existentially conflicting perspectives and narratives
a practical understanding of decolonisation and its value in planetary regeneration
development and improvement of self-learning and co-learning skills, approaches and methods
improved clarity on how to embed perspectives and inquiries around decolonial sustainability in your work
increased capacity and creativity to innovate for systemic justice
new purpose within your sector aligned towards building a just world where "development" is self-determined
Five overarching themes make up the course programme, designed to enable participants to view the activities of public and private enterprises from the perspectives of humanity's long pasts and ecology's stubborn silence.
STORIES OF THE GLOBAL SOUTH
General state of the planet
What have been the dominant stories that have gotten us here?
The long view of power
NARRATIVES LOUD AND QUIET
The power of stories vs. the stories of power
Mechanisms of silence and denial
Worldviews: dominant vs. alternatives
INTERROGATING SUSTAINABILITY, INC.
Critical assessment of global and corporate sustainability frameworks and institutions
Mapping and analysing colonial narratives and approaches on individual and institutional levels
PLANETARY SYSTEMS COLLAPSE
Reframing systems of human relationships to the Sixth Mass Extinction, and societal collapse as collateral damage, centring upon ongoing Global South experiences of collapse
OUR ROLES AT THE END OF THE WORLD
Seeing new paths for "sustainability" and "regeneration"
What are our individual and collective roles?
19/21 January to 21/23 June 2024 (5 months)
This spans various working "seasons" in different sectors, including quarterly reporting periods, intending to spark important embedded co-learning opportunities. Regular course schedules continue during holiday seasons to encourage participants to use the mindspace to explore more deeply.
Size of cohort
Maximum of 100 places in each cohort, offered to successfully vetted professionals in climate science, sustainability, innovation, communications, business development, academia and activism.
Peer groups of 5-6 people will be organised by time zone and sector.
For Live Sessions, two time zones are offered.
The five-month course includes
twelve two-hour sessions, with two cohorts in two time zones: Afro-Eurasia and Pacific.
Our live sessions are designed as facilitated discussions and explorations based on self-led homework (including reviewing pre-recorded content).
Please check session times via the hyperlinks below.
Pacific Friday/Saturday live sessions
Twelve two-hour sessions at
Afro-Eurasia Sunday live sessions
Twelve two-hour sessions at
This is the bulk of the course.
Course participants are required to prepare for live sessions by watching pre-recorded content (videos not exceeding 120min fortnightly, plus additional reference resources), and bringing reflections to live sessions for interactive discussion.
Follow-up co-learning may include exploring together suggested readings, conducting and sharing own research, developing and designing interventions within your peer group, work organisation or in your sector.
Coursework is due just prior to Sessions 5 and 12.
Peer group explorations
Co-learning is designed via Microsolidarity-based relationships. Self-organised peer group meets between live sessions engage course participants to work through group exercises and support each other in co-learning.
One-to-one sessions with our guest coaches are available as an ad-hoc add-on to provide additional support where participants themselves deem necessary.
Guest-coaching fees are additional to the course fees, and are to be paid during guest-coaching session bookings. Sessions should be booked at least one week in advance.
is this course
We’re serious about this course being an exploration of provocative ideas and different ways of being.
This course utilises an open teaching and learning style that might feel at first detached and uncomfortable for those who are conditioned into a prescriptive educational approach. We will help participants adjust where needed.
By registering for this course, you are agreeing to reflect on and question your reactions, opinions, and attachments - we are asking you to explore some of this individually and with others, within the safe uncomfortable spaces we facilitate for this purpose.
THIS COURSE IS FOR YOU IF...
you are seeking professional development for radical justice
you want to intentionally create space in your life for understanding systemic privilege and systemic oppression (e.g. to emotionally address the deafening emptiness and detachment of the comfort and privilege you experience in your career)
you are willing to decenter yourself, commit to listening to unheard, oppressed perspectives and potentially change the way you work
THIS COURSE IS NOT FOR YOU IF...
you are not prepared to question the dominant models of business we operate within today
you don't feel there is anything deeply wrong with your life or its place in global systems of politics or resource governance
you wholeheartedly subscribe to dominant or mainstream sustainability narratives (e.g. UN SDGs, carbon emissions, etc.) and don’t wish to critique them
you’re uncomfortable with discomfort, and feel challenged by challenge
Click on pictures to know more about each facilitator or guest coach.
Course admin, designer & facilitator
Quest designer & facilitator
Course designer & facilitator
Course designer & facilitator
The Crisps - Greenwashing
Collective Knowledge Works
Course fees include a sizeable contribution to our indigenous partners as indirect course teachers and guest speakers. At least 25% of course revenues are allocated for this purpose. Our indigenous partners are Philippine-based IPMSDL, Brazil-based Instituto Janeraka, and other individuals within the indigenous rights and peasant rights movements who have contributed directly to course content.
Payment will be requested via invoice after cohort places are confirmed. We accept payment in USD, CAD, GBP, EUR, AUD and more - payments may be made via bank transfer or by card.
Middle-class and/or underprivileged Global South folk in the Global South who may be eligible for a scholarship.
Similarly, we welcome any additional contributions e.g. to fund our scholarship spots and/or any additional contributions to our indigenous partners. Please indicate in the registration form where appropriate.
Registrants with a long track record or are currently actively engaging within international aid and development should expect additional registration requirements including an exercise comprising of research and an 8-min video essay. No scholarships are granted to development professionals.
Registration for the next cohorts, DecSust24 Starboard, will open in April 2024.
There is one single course fee tier, payable in any of the following currencies, or equivalent in other currencies:
Access the registration form via the button below.
Registration closes 8pm Papua New Guinea time on 1st December 2023.
We will confirm via email that we have your registration within 72h.
Invoices will be sent out to those who have been accepted into the course by 14th December.
Payment by 1st January 2024 confirms your place in your specified cohort.
Welcome Packs are issued 7th January 2024.
Course begins 19th/21st January.
Direct any inquiries to
"Intro to Decolonial Sustainability was an unsettling but rewarding course that highlights the need to centre Global South voices and nature and to do the continuous work for actual sustainability, instead of the watered down version that we have become accustomed to.
A must for all those who are in corporate sustainability, philanthropy, international development and social impact."
- Anonymous pilot course participant