Second deep democracy session on collaboration with fossil industry

Should the university collaborate with the fossil industry - and if so, under what conditions? Which ambitions do we have around this topic? That is the subject of a series of meetings the Executive Board is organizing with the University Council. The second meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 15.

In order to get all insights on this topic on the table, the deep democracy method will be used: decision-making with attention and appreciation for other viewpoints. The aim is to gather ideas and intentions from different (academic) disciplines within Utrecht University. From the views of students and staff who are totally against cooperation, to those of researchers currently working with the fossil industry.

Together, we want to work towards a set of findings that the Executive Board and the Employee and student representation will take into account in future decision-making and frameworks for collaborations.

How does it work?

For three hours, approximately forty attendees engage in a conversation about their views. What do they think about collaboration with the fossil industry, and why? What could a solution look like? Co-creation is the key word: the goal is to unravel the answers to these questions together. The outcome of the session is therefore not fixed and can go either way. The Board has indicated its willingness to look at this issue very openly.

The first session on this topic took place on Monday, March 20. Read the summary and detailed report of this meeting here.

15 May

It is no longer possible to register for the session on May 15, all spots are filled. Are you interested in possibly participating in the future, and/or do you want to stay informed about these sessions? Then send an e-mail to

The session on Monday, May 15 will take place from 16:00 – 19:00, in English. Part of the available spots have been distributed by invitation, and part by open registration. 

The two meetings on Marcy 20 and May 15 are internal in nature because, as Utrecht University, we initially want to get the insights within our own community on the table. In addition to students, researchers, staff and activists, members of the Executive Board and the Employee and student representation will also participate.