Existential resilience

For several years, Lund University has allocated funds for thematic collaboration initiatives. Researchers within the University apply for these funds, but to qualify for them, you need to provide authentic collaboration with parties from the surrounding society. There is always fierce competition for the thematic collaboration initiative funds. One wonders why… It’s not much money for each initiative and a lot of time and effort goes into the application – not to mention the actual work afterwards.

Is it the idea behind the whole thing? Probably. Broad interdisciplinary collaboration within academia (at least three faculties must be represented) in collaboration with actors with a clear purpose of making a difference in the world – I mean, who wouldn’t want to work with this?!

The Birgit Rausing Centre for Medical Humanities plays a part in one of the most recently granted collaborative initiatives: Existential resilience: Contemplation, aesthetics, compassion (ERiCi).  Martin Garwicz, Professor of Integrative Neurophysiology and centre director for BRCMH, is one of three project coordinators. The other two coordinators are Christine Wamsler, Professor of Sustainability Science at the Centre for Sustainability Studies, LUCSUS and Max Liljefors, Professor of Art History and Visual Studies.

The initiative explores the role of contemplation, aesthetics and compassion to counter stress, fragmentation and loss of meaning that underlie today’s societal crises. It involves supporting existential resilience through integrated approaches that link art and health, nature and health, inner change, relationship-building and sustainability across individual, collective and global levels.

The collaborative initiative connects to research being done at the Faculties of Social Sciences, Medicine, Fine and Performing Arts, and the Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology at Lund University and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. The researchers collaborate with relevant professionals within healthcare, sustainability, schools and higher education institutions.

More about the collaborative initiative in the following article: The inner journey towards a sustainable future | Lund University

May 15, 2023

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