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Opening Ceremony Recordings: Shaping Sustainable Futures

An aerial view of three rectangular agricultural fields along a road. Photo by Pexels via Pixabay.

On 4 September, Wageningen University & Research celebrated the 105th Opening of the Academic Year, 2023-2024. This year's theme was Shaping Sustainable Futures.

There was a focus on the future of food, as well as the role of WUR, and other universities, in leading change:

"Throughout our history we have strived to strike a delicate balance between the need to produce food to nourish a growing population with safeguarding the wellbeing of the planet and its diverse species. […] Without a thriving and healthy planet earth, humans' ability to sustainably produce essentials like food, energy and clothes diminishes. It is a simple truth that underscores the interconnectedness between our survival and the wellbeing of our shared environment. Our knowledge and understanding of these complex problems have evolved, and so has our sense of radical responsibility."

Sjoukje Heimovaara, WUR President

A handful of TABLE associates presented talks at the Opening, including Ken Giller, Jeroen Candel and Ingrid de Zwarte.

Ken Giller

Ken Giller's talk was titled "Land sharing and land sparing?". He was also interviewed for a news piece titled "We need different types of agriculture and nature".


Jeroen Candel

Jeroen Candel's talk was titled "Food policy at a crossroads". He was also interviewed for a news piece titled "We need political leadership if we are to achieve a sustainable food system".

Ingrid de Zwarte

Ingrid de Zwarte's talk was titled "Towards 'zero hunger'". She was also interviewed for a news piece titled "The history of famine teaches us a lot about the future".


More about the Opening Academic Year ceremony, as well online videos of all of the talks, can be found here.

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