Topics as wide-ranging as climate change, reproductive and sexual justice, Indigenous rights and decolonization, conflict and violence, and global migration – not to mention their intersections with each other, and with structures such as racism, white supremacy, colonialism, sexism, heterosexism, ableism, and capitalism – are creating calamities the world over. As a result, political leaders, academics, and local communities alike have found themselves grappling with a growing list of deeply complex and troubling questions. How can we protect children, women, and transgender and queer people from violence? How can we ensure that everyone has the right and capacity to make decisions about the most intimate aspects of their lives, especially concerning their reproductive and sexual health and their gender identity and expression? What alternative discourses can we propose to combat ring-wing extremist ideologies that are increasingly entering the political mainstream? Why have we so far failed to ensure global food security and access to safe drinking water? How will we bring carbon emissions to zero? What will our policy responses need to be if we continue failing in these regards? These and many other pressing local and global issues that fall into the purview of political science depend not only on our intellectual attention, but also on our capacity to collaborate within, across, and beyond disciplinary and sectoral boundaries to move towards just solutions.
The absence of institutional support for widely available and accessible care, the insufficient numbers of care workers, and many other factors have led to a worldwide care deficit. Indeed, the International Labour Organization (ILO) argues that there will be a ‘severe and unsustainable global care crisis’ unless new policy solutions are proposed (Addati et al, 2018: xxvii).