A dramatic misconception of contemporary society has been to segregate Humanities from other sciences, reducing space and time scales to immediate problems and losing the dialectic relation between features and perceptions, that allow to understand transformative processes beyond immediate episodes and, consequently, This precludes to design efficient strategies to face human needs.
The purpose of all academic studies is to address, with specific methods in each domain, social concerns at various levels, and one major responsibility of the Humanities is to help supporting human reflections and deliberations, providing them with long term coherence, efficiency and sustainability.
In face of the global challenges of humans, it is crucial to understand that their diversity is not opposed to their radical unity as a species, and that this dialectic relation allows to reshape the interactions with other living beings and the earth at large, perceived not only as a physical object but as a web of meanings that are diverse but, also, convergent.
The programme BRIDGES, that CIPSH helped conceiving since its initial meeting in Mação, Portugal, in 2019, is a tool that allows to resume all these dimensions through the specific scope and methods of the Humanities, integrating the different sciences, the different kinds of knowledge, the different cultural approaches, the different interests and perceptions, all within the same species, facing similar difficulties and needs.
The contributions of philology, archaeology, history, philosophy, anthropology, geography, psychology and other humanities lie in framing contemporary perceived needs and problems within such a wider scope, avoiding the trap of simply solving one immediate problem by generating new ones.
BRIDGES is not about building a common agenda, but to co-construct a convergent roadmap, based on ongoing experiences and millennia of knowledge. It is not about shaping the image of a specific future, but to integrate uncertainty into human strategies not as a problem but as a resource. It is not about defining a checklist to meet certain standards, but to build a flexible path that acknowledges community-based transformative practices. It is not about emergency and anguish, but about trust, reasoning and knowledge informed foresight.
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