Programme Necessary Utopias 2022-23

IMéRA's « Necessary Utopies » is open to scholars from all disciplines, to artists from all fields and to social actors, i.e. to thinkers and to makers in the broadest sense of the term. Their project must propose new ideas and/or new practical solutions for those local or global problems that the contemporary world considers both inescapable to face but impossible to solve without really thinking and acting outside the box. The fields of invention and application of these necessary utopias are, among others: ecological crisis, health, migration, work, economic and social inequalities, urban life, education, political participation.

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CONTACT: Enrico Donaggio, Director of the programme "Necessary Utopias" and Scientific Director of IMéRA –

Applicants to this call may submit applications either to:

  • Residencies linked to the general themes of the programme.
  • Residencies linked to the themes of a chair in line with a specific axis of the program (collaborative arrangement between IMERA and one of its partners).

The choice must be specified in the application form ("Application options").

Residencies linked to the general themes of the programme (see above)

>> Residencies linked to the general themes of the programme: application and residency Conditions

Residencies linked to the themes of a chair

IMéRA's « Necessary Utopies » programme benefits from the collaboration and support of five partners with whom IMéRA offers thematic chairs.

The Fulbright Chair has already been opened independently (registration closed for 2022-23).

Four Chairs are open under this call:

  1. IRD/IMéRA “Sustainable Development” Chair
  2. AMSE/IMéRA "A World in Crisis" Chair
  3. EHESS/IMéRA "Transregional Studies" Chair
  4. AUF/IMéRA "Structural Transformations and Institutional Dynamics in the Francophonie" Chair

1. The IRD/IMéRA Chair in Sustainable Development is open to experienced researchers from all disciplines, working on themes relevant to the science of sustainability and development and focusing on understanding the links, synergies and trade-offs between SDOs (the nexus approach). It is aimed to develop interdisciplinary research programs at the highest international quality standards on all the topics related to sustainable development, consistently with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The chair holder is intended to carry out these goals within a coherent frame allowing to foster cooperation between IRD and IMéRA and to assure sufficient visibility for the chair activities, mainly through public conferences.

The IRD (French National Institute of Research for Developpement) is a multidisciplinary research institute dedicated to working closely with partner countries on global development issues. It uses an original approach on development research and pluridisciplinary expertise throughout its interna­tional network. Its aims at using its research and tools for the benefit of countries that make science and innovation the prime levers for development and at positioning research for development as a major tool for the new international development agenda.

>> IRD/IMéRA Chair: Application and residency conditions

2. The AMSE/IMéRA "A World in Crisis" Chair is open to researchers in economics, but also in the following disciplines, insofar as the project allows for interaction with the economic science: biology and medicine, law, geography, history, mathematics, neuroeconomics, philosophy, statistics, political science and sociology.

Within the framework of this call, all research projects will be considered, especially those that present a certain element of risk in launching a particularly innovative project, and those aiming to produce a work of synthesis. As an example, AMSE/IMéRA are particularly interested in projects concerning​ network formation, international trade, development, inequalities. Big data issues and historical perspective studies in economic growth are welcome as well.

Aix-Marseille School of Economics (AMSE): AMSE has been recently labeled University Research School for a project of excellence in which AMSE brings together research, teaching and valorization. The research program focuses on economic responses in a changing world. It is based on three pillars: the research center's areas of methodological excellence (dynamic and quantitative macroeconomics, network theory, time series econometrics / panel data), a new methodological area with high potential for teaching and learning research (Big Data), and the geographical location positioned in a privileged way on the Euro-Mediterranean basin.

>> AMSE/IMéRA Chair: Application and Residency Conditions

3. The EHESS-IMéRA Chair in "Transregional Studies" aims at developing at the highest international level comparative research among any regions of the world. The research projects proposed should in particular take into account the involved scale effects and the related issues of exchange, circulation and connection in the reformulation of social orders. They should also build on innovative and clearly articulated interdisciplinary approaches. The EHESS-IMéRA chair particularly welcomes research projects interested in the comparison between cultural areas. 

The chaire holder has to carry out these research themes within a coherent frame allowing to foster cooperation between EHESS and IMéRA and to assure sufficient visibility for the chaire activities, mainly through public conferences.

The Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) is a prestigious French institution devoted to research and teaching in social sciences. The EHESS research and teaching activities also involve members of French and foreign partners. These activities are carried out at the Paris headquarters and at the regional centers of the institution (Lyon, Marseille and Toulouse) as well.

>> EHESS/IMéRA Chair: Application and residency conditions

4. The AUF/IMéRA Chair on "Structural Transformations and Institutional Dynamics in the Francophonie" is aimed at senior francophone academics and researchers from all disciplines, who have acquired international scientific recognition (prizes, publications, international expertise...).

The chairholder must carry out this research theme in a framework that will intensify the cooperation between AUF and AMU/IMéRA and ensure sufficient visibility for the work of the chair via a series of public conferences.

The Agence universitaire de la Francophonie (AUF) is one of the largest associations of higher education and research institutions in the world. It brings together more than 900 universities, grandes écoles, university networks and scientific research centers using the French language in over 100 countries. The AUF places at the heart of its action the valorization of scientific expertise, the identification of innovation, the sharing of good practices and the development of projects in partnership for the benefit of and in cooperation with the French-speaking higher education and research institutions.

>>AUF/IMéRA Chair: Application and residency conditions