The Anthropocene Laboratory

Humanity has become a global force shaping how the planet’s biosphere functions. Anthropogenic pressures are challenging the resilience of Earth’s favourable environmental conditions, upon which societies, cultures, and human civilisations are fundamentally dependent. The Anthropocene Laboratory aims to generate and provide science-based understanding and insight to build and enable novel pathways towards a sustainable future. Its focus is on the biosphere, Earth’s thin layer of life, which includes humankind.

The Anthropocene Laboratory brings together perspectives and knowledge from the natural and social sciences, the humanities, and other fields of knowledge. The Laboratory’s purpose is to advance a holistic understanding of the Anthropocene, helping to meet the increasing demand for science-based knowledge to facilitate pathways towards sustainability. By doing so, the Anthropocene Laboratory will nurture a generation of scholars who collaborate across disciplinary and geographic boundaries.


A revitalised anthropocene biosphere.


The mission of the Anthropocene Laboratory is to advance understandings of the intertwined biosphere, and to leverage this knowledge to identify and enable novel pathways towards a sustainable and just future. Through respectful dialogue and interdisciplinary collaboration, we explore creative approaches that integrate perspectives from the natural and social sciences, humanities, arts, and other fields of knowledge. Our aim is to catalyse positive change and inspire a future where our relationships with the living planet are revitalised.

As part of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the Laboratory functions as a meeting place for intense experimentation and collaboration, gathering international researchers around key topics. International networks of world-leading scholars will be built and strengthened, with talented early-career researchers identified and brought in. These networks will work to develop the understanding of the Anthropocene biosphere’s dynamics to facilitate action in response to the challenges it faces.

Key elements of the Laboratory’s activities include running high-quality interdisciplinary workshops, transdisciplinary science-for-change meetings, and the hosting of a postdoctoral programme. Engaging researchers of all disciplines, as well as artists, businesses, civil society organisations, indigenous communities, and government representatives – across geographies and experiences – the Laboratory strives to offer an innovative platform for interdisciplinary research.

The biosphere urgently needs revitalising. It is time to generate and mobilise new insights through collaborative learning to offer guidance to redirect societal development towards a sustainable future.