Digital UNESCO MASTERCLASS: Colonial Continuities and Environmental Justice

Bologna – Italy

Digital UNESCO MASTERCLASS: Colonial Continuities and Environmental Justice

September 28th from 17 to 19.30


This year, ECCAR and the Municipality of Bologna will host a Digital UNESCO MASTERCLASS on Colonial Continuities and Environmental Justice, targeting young people, on September 28 from 5 to 7.30 pm. The event is a follow-up of the two Master Classes, done in presence and organised by Heidelberg on occasion of the World Cities’ Day in 2020 and by Bologna in March 2022 during the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. The first edition focused on colonial traces and continuities in Heidelberg and the exclusion of BIPOC voices within European climate movements, while the second one identified how migration and climate change were strictly interconnected and a consequence of colonial continuities.


Therefore the third edition of the Masterclass is an important occasion to raise awareness on how climate change is affecting the global south and how young people can contribute actively in their cities to climate change. The guest speakers highlight in their talks how European colonial past can arguably be explained not only by a lack of historical awareness but also by enduring colonial continuities in cultural representation as well as in exploitation of land and resources.


The event follows up with 4 workshops of 45/50min, facilitated by the speaker to deepen the topics addressed in their talks. At the end of each workshop, the participants present 12 commitments, which will be on of the basis of advocacy activities linked to the #ClimateOfChange project and scheduled at the ECCAR General Assembly in autumn. The program is meant to stimulate the reflection of participants’ activist work within the climate movement but also within their own communities and cities. 



  • Daphne Budasz, a PhD researcher at the department of History of the European University Institute in Florence. Her research interests include the relations between gender, race and imperialism as well as colonial memory and heritage in Europe. Besides her research, she is involved in several public history projects and is notably the co-founder of Postcolonial Italy: Mapping Colonial Heritage. She talks about traces of colonial history in European cities and exploitation of land and resources.
  • Abdou Mbacke Diouf, Italian-Senegalese, professional volleyball player, molecular biologist, writer of the two novels "It’s always summer" and "The Teranga Pianist". He highlights how the invention of the term “race” in 1800s as so far shaped how ways of thinking, points of views and how we perceive migration flows
  • Tonny Nowshin, an economist, climate justice and degrowth activist . Along with social movements in Bangladesh, she mobilised to save the world’s largest Mangrove forest, the Sundarbans. She is an international development professional and has worked for German and international climate NGOs. Professionally at the moment, her work focuses on fossil fuel finance.
  • Patience Nabukalu is a climate justice activist from Uganda, coordinator of Friday for Future Uganda and a member of FFF MAPA. She is passionate about wetland conservation, fighting plastic pollution and organising local and international communities for climate justice. She focuses on the colonial history of her country, the loss and damage it has caused and the continued colonial project EACOP, the East African Crude Oil Pipeline which is a climate bomb for Uganda

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