Conference 2024

Thank you for attending our Navigating Transitions conference on 24 April 2024 at TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht. Watch the film that gives an impression of the day and photos of the conference. In 2025, the conference will take place in Eindhoven. We’re hoping you will join us then!

Video: Impression of the day

Video registration of the Opening session:

Video registration of the Closing session:

Video registration Plenary Session Track 1 ‘Digital Innovations for a Circular Society’ hosted by the Institute 4 a Circular Society:

Video registration Plenary Session Track 2 ‘Cooperation is needed to make the transition to prevention and health’, hosted by the Institute 4 Preventive Health:

Photo impression:

About the conference

How can science and education contribute to navigating societal transitions during challenging times? In times of increasing socio-economic and environmental challenges, interdisciplinary research and education can play a pivotal role in finding solutions to these complex issues.

The host of our conference was Hester den Ruijter. Hester is a Professor of Cardiovascular disease in women at the University Medical Center in Utrecht. Her aim is to translate knowledge from experimental research to the patient.

Keynote speaker Roman Krznaric is a social philosopher who writes about the power of ideas to create change. His latest book is the international bestseller The Good Ancestor: How to Think Long Term in a Short-Term World. Particularly known for his work on empathy and long-term thinking, his writings have been widely influential amongst political and ecological campaigners, education reformers, social entrepreneurs and designers. 

Roman Krznaric introduced an altering mindset based on the concept of the ‘Good Ancestor’, that encourages forward-thinking actions. His philosophy prompts us to contribute to a sustainable and inclusive future through collaborative efforts across diverse fields of knowledge.


The conference kicked off with a plenary session, followed by three individual tracks, a plenary closing and drinks.

After the plenary closing, there was the poster exhibition to learn more about diverse research projects, showcasing the innovative collaborations shaping the future.

About the tracks

Track 1: Digital Innovations for a Circular Society

The Institute for a Circular Society (i4CS) emphasizes the complexity of transitioning to a circular society and highlights the value of digital tools, including digital twinning and augmented reality, in facilitating this shift. In this track, we will explore how these tools can be utilized in designing circular solutions for sectors, such as hospitals or regional food systems, addressing issues of data origin, accessibility, and potential divides between users and non-users.

Track 2: Empowering Healthier Communities Through Collaboration

The Institute for Preventive Health (i4PH) track addresses health challenges in the Netherlands, featuring inspiring speakers and two workshops on ‘Nurturing healthy lifestyles’ and ‘Future frontiers in health’, involving AI innovations and Living Technologies.

Track 3: Competencies for Transitions

Transitions are messy. Embracing the uncertain and sometimes chaotic nature of transitions, we discover the importance of developing new skills and competencies. In this track, the Centre for Unusual Collaborations and our Education Programme invites you  on an experiential journey. Let’s explore together how to learn, enhance, and apply future competencies in our daily work.