INCLUDE Lunch: Academic flying and the means of communication

Can academic flying be justified in the face of a climate crisis?  How can academia change its air travelling habit? Join us in the second Include Lunch seminar, with political scientist Sebastian Jäckle and sociologist Mimi Sheller.

Two passengers looking at a plane through a window at an airport

Photo by Randy Rooibaatjie on Unsplash


Please register to attend the seminar. A webinar link will be sent to all participants by email a few days before the event.

About the seminar

In recent decades, academic work has come to be ever more closely entwined with air travel, to the point where many academics today think of flying – even of the intercontinental variety – as an essential aspect of their work life. But can academic globetrotting really be justified in the face of climate crisis and an ever-more apparent need for sustainable transitions? If it cannot, how can academia kick its air travelling habit?

In this INCLUDE seminar, which springs out of the edited volume, Academic Flying and the Means of Communication (forthcoming, Palgrave Macmillan), political scientist Sebastian Jäckle and sociologist Mimi Sheller present their separate takes on academic flying and the need to find alternative means of academic communication. They both draw on the experience of Covid-19, where most all academic flying came to an abrupt – but quite possibly only temporary – end, and offer suggestions as to how we can take advantage of the pandemic as a momentum towards changing academics’ air travel practices.

UPDATE:  The book is out: Academic Flying and the Means of Communication


  • Introduction
    Kristian Bjørkdahl, Center for Development and the Environment, University of Oslo.
  • The Carbon Footprint of Scientific Conferences – Comparing Physical, Hybrid and Online Conferences
    Sebastian Jäckle, Assistant Professor, Department of Politics, University of Freiburg
    CommentsLars Böcker, Researcher, Institute of Transport Economics
  •  The End(s) of Academic Flying: an Itinerarium Vitae
    Mimi Sheller, Professor of Sociology, Drexel University
    Comments: Lars Henning Wøhncke, MA-Student, Center for Development and the Environment, University of Oslo
  • Discussion and questions from audience
    Moderated by Anders Tønnesen 

About the speakers

Sebastian JäckleSebastian Jäckle is Assistant Professor at the University of Freiburg, Department of Politics. His research spans several topics, including the use of geographical information systems in political science applications, right wing terrorism, attitudes in transnational comparison and appearance effects in elections. Recently he has focused on the consequences of the science business on the carbon footprint.


Mimi ShellerMimi Sheller is Professor of Sociology, Head of the Department of Sociology, and founding Director of the Center for Mobilities Research and Policy at Drexel University in Philadelphia. She is founding co-editor of the journal Mobilities, Associate Editor of Transfers, and past President of the International Association for the History of Transport, Traffic and Mobility. Sheller has written or co-edited twelve books and helped to establish the interdisciplinary field of mobilities research.

Published Feb. 3, 2021 4:02 PM - Last modified Apr. 1, 2022 2:47 PM