Philipp P. Thapa

Ecologist, philosopher, writer

How can we live good lives in the future? My work revolves around this question. It touches science and ethics, social research and utopian thinking, activism and art.

At the current time I focus on research. I’m participating in a pan-European cooperation project on sustainable development with the cultural and creative sectors (The Big Green). I’m also working on an article on the function of the imagination in environmental ethics.

Recent publications

Ecotopianism: Towards a philosophical conception, in the anthology Greentopia: Utopian thought in the anthropocene, edited by Angela Kallhoff and Eva Liedauer, Springer (2024) ➜

The ethics of changing others’ minds (summary), in the proceedings from the Interpret Europe Conference 2024, “Sustainability: Challenging mindsets through heritage interpretation” ➜

Literature report: Sustainable development with the cultural and creative sectors, from the EU project The Big Green, Sustainable Europe Research Institute Germany (2023) ➜

Eco-authoritarianism and the German constitution: Questions, concepts, and resilience, by Michael Kalis & Philipp P. Thapa, in the journal Die Friedens-Warte (2022) ➜

Social innovation for biodiversity: A literature review and research challenges, by Rafael Ziegler, Josephine Balzac-Arroyo, Rick Hölsgens, Sarah Holzgreve, Fergus Lyon, Joachim H. Spangenberg & Philipp P. Thapa, in the journal Ecological Economics (2022) ➜

Find more on ResearchGate ➜

Talks and workshops

27. Juni 2024, Green Academy (online), Episode 2
How to Build a Beast: Changing the World with Wonder and Joy with Isaac Yuen ➜

6. Juni 2024, Green Academy (online), Episode 1
Learning to Learn: How to Practise Art for a Convivial Future with Jan van Boeckel ➜

19. April 2024, Evangelische Akademie der Nordkirche, Rostock
Gut leben in Gemeinschaft – Praktische Einführung in das utopische Denken [Living well in community – A practical introduction to utopian thinking] ➜

25 March 2024, Univerza na Primorskem, Koper, Slowenien
The ethics of changing others’ minds
Interpret Europe Conference 2024 ➜

22 September 2023, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main
Artivism, local creative spaces, and social-ecological transformation from the bottom up
German Geographical Congress (DKG) ➜

8 September 2023, Universidade do Minho, Guimarães, Portugal
Artivism, local creative spaces, and social-ecological transformation from the bottom up
International Social Innovation Research Conference (ISIRC) ➜

6 July 2023, Universitatea Babeş-Bolyai, Cluj-Napoca, Rumänien
Green artivism and the need for fully imagined utopias
Utopian Studies Society Europe Annual Conference (USSE) ➜

Academic teaching

Making ethical decisions, one-day workshop for early career researchers at the ➜ University of Lübeck, January 2024, next workshop in July 2025

Environmental Ethics, lecture/exercise in the BSc programme ➜ Landscape Use and Nature Conservation, Eberswalde University for Sustainable Development, winter term 2023–24

Ethics in Sustainable Development, compact course in the MSc programme Renewable Energy Engineering and Management, University of Freiburg, taught annually 2011–2023

Is the 1.5-degree target still realistic? The function of education for sustainable development in dealing with the effects of climate change: Analysis and evaluation of the views of leaders in non-formal education using the Delphi method, by Kim Lüdtke, MSc thesis in Environment, Nature Conservation, and Sustainability Education, supervised beside Stefan Zerbe, University of Hildesheim, 2022/23


The Big Green
Project funded by the EU’s Creative Europe programme (2023–27)
Research lead

Sustainable Europe Research Institute (SERI)
Fellow and project staff (The Big Green)

GETIDOS – social-ecological research platform
Hosted by the Institute for Climate Protection, Energy, and Mobility (IKEM)

Radboud Universiteit
PhD researcher in environmental philosophy, Institute for Science in Society

University of Freiburg
Visiting instructor in ethics in sustainable development (2011–23), MSc Renewable Energy Engineering and Management

Eberswalde University for Sustainable Development
Visiting instructor in environmental ethics, BSc Landscape Use and Nature Conservation

German Writers Association (VS)
Chapter President, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

Association of German-language Translators (VdÜ)

Low German and Frisian PEN Centre
Founding member