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Read LUCSUS Annual Report 2023!

Illustration of people on a solar field for LUCSUS energy theme. Illustration: Catrin Jakobsson.

In our Annual Report for 2023, we have gathered highlights from the year from research, policy and engagement. We also outline key events within our PhD programme and our Education.

Read the Word from our Director Barry Ness, and download our Annual Report 2023.

Illustration of people on a solar field for LUCSUS energy theme. Illustration: Catrin Jakobsson.

LUCSUS Annual Report 2023

Read about our development as a centre, and highlights within research, policy and impact during the year.

Read the Annual Report on

Download the report 

Director's Word from Barry Ness, from the Annual Report

While new to my role as director, I have had the privilege of being at LUCSUS for over 20 years. Therefore, it is with great pride I reflect on the accomplishments at LUCSUS in 2023, all made possible by the hard work from our dedicated researchers, PhD candidates, students, and administrative staff. At the heart of LUCSUS research, education, and impact work, is the drive to both understand and drive sustainable societal change, tasks that couldn’t be more important as the effects of climate change become more evident throughout 2023. 

New research projects and new staff

During the year, LUCSUS has continued to evolve. We have new research projects and several new staff members. We are especially pleased to have extended our PhD research school by four new candidates, as they bring new ideas, perspectives and energy. They will be working on diverse projects, including Environmental Human Right Defenders in Colombia, climate adaptation and power, and human-nature relationships in glacierized environments in Nepal. Their recruitment is the result of our successful grants – propelling LUCSUS research several years into the future. This success is a testament to LUCSUS’ innovative approach, and our researchers’ quest to push boundaries in sustainability science. 

ERC Grant on Perennials and key work on Loss and Damage 

Despite the numerous successes at LUCSUS in 2023, there are a few areas to that deserve extra recognition. First, former LUCSUS director, Professor Lennart Olsson, was awarded the prestigious European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant, for research on perennial agriculture, the first ERC grant at LUCSUS. The project investigates opportunities and obstacles for a future transition to an agricultural system based on perennial cropping systems. The five-year, €2.5 million project will enable researchers to explore their most innovative and ambitious ideas around perennial agriculture and further establish Sweden as a hub in this arena. We are excited about the project, and for Lennart and colleagues to advance perennials research to new frontiers. Professor Emily Boyd’s work on loss and damage must also be highlighted. 2023 saw a landmark agreement being reached at the United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP28, where delegates agreed on the establishment of a fund to support developing countries to deal with loss and damage from climate change. For Emily and several other researchers at LUCSUS who have been working with loss and damage, this was a solid step forward in the journey for loss and damage as a part of the COP climate agreements. 

LUCSUS Education takes big strides with the development of a new Master Programme

Notable work also took place with LUCSUS education. Continued efforts have been devoted to reforming the LUMES programme in environmental studies and sustainability science to ensure the programme stays on the cutting edge of the field. A special thanks to Maja Essebo and Amanda Elgh for co-ordinating these efforts. The changes will help to ensure that LUMES will continue to be highly sought after, with its almost one-thousand applicants to the programme every year. Furthermore, our new master’s programme on climate change and society, LUCAS, made solid developmental progress, with an expected launch in 2025. The programme will further extend LUCSUS teaching and student learning in new domains, and to help shape new change agents in their work on shaping climate change mitigation and adaptation. 

Thank you to the previous leadership at LUCSUS

Finally, with the change in leadership at LUCSUS, I must also recognise the great work by the outgoing leadership team over past years, devotion that has helped to place us in the position as a dynamic research and education centre. Thank you Emily Boyd and Ann Åkerman for your tireless dedication to the organisation. I look forward to further building and developing the work so we can continue to keep LUCSUS research and education on the cutting edge.

Two women cutting cake. Photo.
Professor and previous LUCSUS Director Emily Boyd, and Deputy Director Ann Åkerman, pictured during their farewell fika at LUCSUS in the end of 2023.

Download LUCSUS Annual Report 2023

A man, LUCSUS Director Barry Ness. Photo: Noomi Egan.

Barry Ness, Director

Barry Ness is Associate Professor and Director for Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies. His expertise focuses on transdisciplinary collaborations with societal actors to derive and test solutions to problems such as carbon emissions due to transport of goods, or from food production processes. Of special interest is to exolore how actors learn in these collaborative processes, and understanding important attributes of these bottom-up processes to create more effective sustainable change.  

Read more about Barry Ness