What happens to scalar thinking when the analytical distinctions between global and local as well as human and non-human spaces no longer make sense, especially given the engagement with climate change and the planetary in the social sciences and humanities? These were the challenging questions that PIs Ignacio Farías and Silke Steets posed to the speakers and audience at the 5th international CRC symposium “Spatial Figures in the Anthropocene” on 5th and 6th October 2023. Scholars across regions and disciplines came together for two days of discussions, panels, coffee conversations, a metaverse animation, and a lecture performance to advance, share, and inspire thinking and activities on spatiality that address the anthropogenic impact on Earth.
In this blog post, CRC members Séverine Marguin and Jamie-Scott Baxter reflect on a trip they took with their students to the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh as part of the project seminar "Nature, Space and Biopolitics: Understanding the Conservation Regime in Planetary Urbanism." With the aim of investigating the refiguration of the modern institution of the botanic garden in the face of multiple socio-environmental crises, they summarize the key insights they gained by comparing two of the most important European botanic gardens from an interdisciplinary perspective: the Botanical Garden in Berlin and the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh.