Critical Bifurcations. A theoretical reflection on the transition to a convivial society

GSIS Utopia(s) Conversations on a Convivial Society for All & on a Sustainable Planet

GSIS is organising a series of conversations in various formats that tie in with the themes of our Utopia(s) Reloaded Talks in October 2023. Our Utopia(s) Conversations will revolve around a Convivial Society for All, a Sustainable Planet and Meaningful Technologies.

Our guest, Frédéric Vandenberghe, outlines the topic of his presentation as follows:

Depending on language, theory and political inclination, intellectuals, politicians and technocrats invoke socio-ecological transformations, sustainability transitions or systemic collapse to think through the passage to a new mode of development and production beyond carbon, growth or capitalism. In this talk, I will give an overview of some of the most prominent theories of the green, red and brown transitions. I will classify them conceptually in terms of the depth, the intensity and the scope of transformations they deem necessary to transition to a convivial society and rearrange them so as to form a social theory of critical bifurcations.

Vandenberghe is sociologist, Professor at the Institute of Philosophy and Social Sciences of the Universidad Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, currently Max Weber Fellow at the Max Weber Kolleg, Universität Erfurt, Germany, and going to teach at the Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg in Halle (Saale), Germany, in June. He is Co-President of the ISA Sociological Theory Committee (RC16) and is working on adapting sociology to the planetary conditions. He was speaker at our Utopia(s) Reloaded Talks.

Frédéric Vandenberghe: Critical bifurcations. A theoretical reflection on the transition to a convivial society

4 June 2024, 17:00 CEST
GSIS Lab: 4lthangrund – Wolke, “Alte WU”, Augasse 2-6, 1090 Wien
(Kern C, Lift, 4. Stock links)

Online participation is enabled.
Join the meeting:

Pls, register: mail to

This event is subsidised by the Commission for Education, Inclusion, Diversity and Social Affairs (BIDS), a District Cultural Promotion Division of the Vienna Cultural Department (MA 7).

[the picture in the header shows Frédéric Vandenberghe’s latest book co-edited with Alain Caillé in 2021] 

Vandenberghe ready for his talk (photo by Irena Mostowicz)


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