As the kick-off workshop planned for early 2022 couldn’t take place due to the pandemic, it was the first in-person meeting of the full group since the project was launched, and for most team members also their first stay in Munich. It offered the unique opportunity to not only share progress made in the work packages underway and discuss preliminary insights, but also to theorise, analyse, and interpret data together as a team. Moreover, it provided space for conceptualising the first papers to be presented at conference events and planning the next stages of the project, such as upcoming fieldwork in Tanzania. Finally, it also offered the team to reflect on the ongoing collaboration as an international and interdisciplinary team of scholars based in different world regions and in different social and professional contexts.
As collaboration partners, we perceived the face-to-face encounter as most valuable for the project’s scientific progress but also the joint spirit within our In-Forest team – an indication of how the epistemic and social in scientific knowledge production are inherently interlinked.