10. Deutsch-Brasilianisches Symposium zur nachhaltigen Entwicklung. Connecting innovation and Sustainability – opportunities and challenges after Covid-19

The tenth edition of the Brazilian-German Symposium on Sustainable Development, with the central theme “Connecting innovation and sustainability – opportunities and challenges after Covid-19”, aims to be a platform for inter- and transdisciplinary exchange and debate with a focus on innovation for sustainability, in particular towards the reflections, opportunities and challenges for sustainable development after Covid-19. 

The first Brazil-Germany Symposium of Sustainable Development was held in Tübingen, Germany in 2003. Since than it has been taking place in both countries alternately every other year. The aim of the Symposium is to offer a platform for inter- and trans disciplinary exchange and discussions among German and Brazilian participants representing stakeholders of science, education, economy and politics and other organizations to strengthen our bilateral cooperation connection innovation and sustainable development. – Sustainability innovation. According to the United Nations, “Sustainable Development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (Brundtland Report, 1987). In general, sustainability can be seen as the interaction of environmental, social and economic components. Environment (Earth resources and processes) and human societies (social and economic) are connected by “bearable” and “viable” terms, describing possible ways on how human societies can develop while at the same time sustaining the ability of natural systems to provide the natural resources and ecosystem services upon which the economy and society depends.  

Very often the key components of sustainability such as energy, water, soil, climate, biodiversity, agriculture and forestry, health, societal actions and response and (bio-) economics, are analyzed and managed separately. The scope of the Brazil-Germany Symposium of Sustainable Development is to bring together researchers not only from the two countries and different life and research experiences, but also from different areas enhancing inter- and trans-disciplinary approaches and, thus, maximize the benefits of integrated concepts and solutions. 

Innovation is introduced as a new thematic string to the Symposium, as innovation has been an underrated factor in development strategies and policies. Sustainability in the 21st century is not conceivable without looking at the crucial role of innovation for sustainable development.  

The covid-19 pandemic, which still costs many lives, has set back almost all developmental and social processes by many years. On the other hands side, during the pandemic global scientific and research cooperation has been increased considerably. Also, many sectors were driven to reassess and rethink their actions. Even if there is not a clear conceptual cut between before and after the pandemic, a recent need for reshaping the strategies of overcoming the sustainability challenges faced by the world can be noticed. 

In the response, the scientists will find new research directions in the very big field of innovation for sustainability which will target different levels of action and research.

Presentation of the significance of the event for the participating subject areas

Through oral and poster presentations, as well as guided field trips, the 2022 edition of the Symposium will offer the opportunity for Germans and Brazilians to discuss innovation and sustainable development of two societies, considering the differences of culture, climate, natural resources and economic development, in special after the pandemic,because global scientific and research cooperation has been increased considerably. 

The symposium will take place in Brazil, September 18-20, 2022, at the Federal Fluminense University (UFF) in Niteroi in Rio de Janeiro. Together with UFF Niteroi, the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) and the Brasilien-Zentrum Baden-Württemberg of the University of Tübingen are responsible for organizing this edition of the event.

The 10th Brazilian-German Symposium for Sustainable Development, hosted by the Federal Fluminense University (UFF) in collaboration with the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), offers the opportunity to integrate knowledge and experience from multiple stakeholders by connecting innovation and sustainability. UFF and UFRJ promote sustainable development in the various areas in which the university operates, contributing to the well-being of the internal and external community by investing in research and new environmental and socially responsible technologies, as well as its innovation policy aimed at interaction and learning among academic, business, and governmental institutional spheres. Together with UFF Niteroi, and the UFRJ,  the Brasilien-Zentrum Baden-Württemberg of the University of Tübingen are responsible for organizing this edition of the event.

On the German side, leading universities in Baden Württemberg connected to the Brazil Center of the state (bwBZ) such as the University of Hohenheim, University of Stuttgart, University of Heidelberg, Technological Institute of Karlsruhe and the University of Applied Forest Sciences Rottenburg will participate in this important event, aiming to qualify and expand the different scientific sessions of the event. 

We expect contributions from science, politics, economy and society, meaning that the Symposium will offer an outstanding platform for sharing experiences and expertise in a wide and interdisciplinary range. 

Overall, there will be 4 topics on bilateral cooperation:

– Towards a sustainable future: social, economic and cultural practices
– Experiencing and Mitigating Climate Emergency
– Re-designing innovation for sustainability, managing resources and wastes
– Health and sustainability in a post-Covid-19 world

The Symposium is organized by the UFF and UFRJ, with support of the Brazilian Center of Baden-Württemberg at the University of Tübingen. Furthermore, the Symposium is strongly supported by Baden-Württemberg International (bw-i) in Stuttgart and the German Center for Research and Innovation (DWIH) in São Paulo.

Evidence of the international character of the event


Expected number of participants (excluding students and doctoral researchers) 

From Germany

We expect around 50 German participants holding a PhD or higher degree.

From abroad

We expect at least 80 Brazilian participants holding a PhD or higher degree. Additionally, we count with 50 PhD students.


We estimate that the Symposium will have approx. 250 participants. Amongst the participants, there will also be young scientists from Brazil and Germany as well as some companies with research activities in the area of sustainability.

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