Perils and promises: Social cohesion amidst the global polycrisis

Event Type

Bonn, 06.11.2023 until 07.11.2023


German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS)

Social cohesion shapes a society's resilience to shocks and crises. Those societies in which individuals are bound together in unity and solidarity are better able to stand together through distress and difficult times. Yet, the currently prevailing global polycrisis is characterized by the convergence of multiple shocks. These span from climate change through disruptions in global value chains to political polarization, and even international conflict. Such crisis cascades create complex interactions that have the potential to jeopardize social and political systems. Meanwhile, social cohesion itself also seems at perils from multiple crises in many societies worldwide. This is particularly alarming as social cohesion is often praised to be the key to navigate these challenges. Against this backdrop, participants of the conference together strive to better understand the role of social cohesion in times of cascading crises.


The conference will address the following main questions:  


  • How can the cohesiveness of societies be strengthened?
  • When and why does social cohesion erode?  
  • How can social cohesion help in building up crisis resilience?  
  • How can development cooperation contribute to social cohesion in times of polycrisis? 


The conference serves as a platform for professionals, scholars, experts, policy makers, and thought leaders from diverse backgrounds to convene, discuss, and pool evidence on whether and how social cohesion enables societies to respond to crises and shocks, and how social cohesion itself can be preserved during times of polycrisis. 

This conference is part of IDOS’s research project “Social cohesion in Africa", which is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

Hinweis / Please note

Während unserer Veranstaltungen werden z.T. Foto- und/oder Filmaufnahmen gemacht, die für Zwecke der Veranstaltungsberichterstattung und allgemeinen Öffentlichkeitsarbeit in verschiedenen Medien veröffentlicht werden. Sie haben jederzeit das Recht, die Foto- oder Videograf*innen darauf hinzuweisen, dass Sie nicht aufgenommen werden möchten.

During our events photos and/or videos may be taken which may be published in various media for the purposes of documentation and PR activities. You have the right at any time to point out to the photographer or videographer that you do not want to be photographed or filmed.

Event information

06.11.2023 until 07.11.2023


German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS)
Tulpenfeld 6
D-53113 Bonn


-- Registration will be opened soon --


-- 7-8 November 2023, including pre-workshop event on the evening of 6 November --


Photo: Dr. Daniel Nowack Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter im Forschungsprogramm „Transformation politischer (Un-)Ordnung“

Dr. Daniel Nowack
Researcher in the research programme “Transformation of Political (Dis-)order



Research project

Icon: Africa, Projekt "Soziale Kohäsion in Afrika"

Social cohesion in Africa