City Research Online

The voices of youth in envisioning positive futures for nature and people

Rana, S., Ávila-García, D., Dib, V. , Familia, L., Gerhardinger, L., Martin, E., Martins, P., Pompeu, J., Selomane, O., Tauli, J. I., Tran, D. H. T., Valle, M., von Below, J. & Pereira, L. M. ORCID: 0000-0002-4996-7234 (2020). The voices of youth in envisioning positive futures for nature and people. Ecosystems and People, 16(1), pp. 326-344. doi: 10.1080/26395916.2020.1821095


The unpredictable Anthropocene poses the challenge of imagining a radically different, equitable and sustainable world. Looking 100 years ahead is not easy, and especially as millennials, it appears quite bleak. This paper is the outcome of a visioning exercise carried out in a 2-day workshop, attended by 33 young early career professionals under the auspices of IPBES. The process used Nature Futures Framework in an adapted visioning method from the Seeds of Good Anthropocene project. Four groups envisioned more desirable future worlds; where humanity has organised itself, the economy, politics and technology, to achieve improved nature-human well-being. The four visions had differing conceptualisations of this future. However, there were interesting commonalities in their leverage points for transformative change, including an emphasis on community, fundamentally different economic systems based on sharing and technological solutions to foster sustainability and human-nature connectedness. Debates included questioning the possibility of maintaining local biocultural diversity with increased connectivity globally and the prominence of technology for sustainability outcomes. These visions are the first step towards a wider galvanisation of youth visions for a brighter future, which is often missing in the arena where it can be taken seriously, to trigger more transformative pathways towards meeting global goals.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Publisher Keywords: Futures, IPBES, generation Y, millennials, human-nature connections, leverage points, transformative change, youth visions, nature futures framework
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Q Science > QH Natural history
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Healthcare Services Research & Management
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

Download (6MB) | Preview



Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login