The completed report on the 2009 series of ESD surveys is provided in a separate page. It includes word frequency analysis for each of the ESD themes, and a synthesis of interdependencies between the eight MDGs and the eight ESD themes:
This 16x16 matrix is a concise representation of all the interdependencies between the ESDs, between the MDGs, and between the ESDs and MDGs.
Figure 1. A Synthesis of the MDGs and the ESD Themes
The yellow block includes all the ESD themes, which should be integrated together such that every theme includes dependencies on all the other themes; otherwise, the order in which they are listed is not essential. The next block around the diagonal (red) includes MDGs 1, 8, 2, 7, and 3; and includes nested blocks for MDGs 1, 8, 2, and 7 (blue) and MDGs 1 and 8 (green). The lowest block down the diagonal (orange) includes MDGs 4, 5, and 6. The blocks around the diagonal identify the ESDs/MDGs that are tightly coupled and must be resolved together.
The reader is encouraged to go here to view the complete report. The 2009 series of surveys were a learning exercise, but a lot of good feedback was gathered from the 1004 respondents.
A definition of integral human development (IHD) was provided in Section 2 of the November 2009 issue. The completed report on the 2009 series of ESD surveys also includes a synthesis of the MDGs and ESDs with IHD. IHD is the name of the game. If the fraction of the human population that moves toward the upper echelons of Maslow's pyramid is not increased, the MDGs and ESDs mean nothing.
SYNTHESIS OF THE ESDs, MDGs, AND IHD
The ESDs and MDGs 1, 2, 3, 7 and 8 contribute to IHD. MDGs 4, 5, and 6 allow IHD to happen but do not really make them happen, since they pertain to the bottom layer of Maslow's hierarchy. Therefore, in the context of the interdependency analysis and synthesis of ESDs and MDGs, IHD would fit in between MDG3 and MDG4, as shown in the following 17x17 matrix:
Figure 2. A Synthesis of the MDGs, ESDs, and IHD
When IHD is inserted in the matrix, and new block (violet background) is created that includes all the ESDs, MDGs 1, 2, 3, 7 and 8, and IHD. For IHD, the critical MDGs are 1, 2, 3, 7, and 8 together albeit not necessarily in this order. Conversely, as IHD increases it reinforces these MDGs and all the ESDs. When IHD increases it also decreases infant mortality, maternal mortality, and HIV and other epidemics, which in turn allow the number of people who can potentially attain IHD to increase even more. The core engine for this sustainable development process is the block of IHD and MDGs 1, 2, 3, 7, and 8. ESD is the fuel that allows IHD to become accessible to more people and enables the sustainable development process to keep moving forward.
More details on the derivation of the block-triangular matrix shown in Figure 2 are given here. But what is really important is to recognize what the real priorities are:
Education as a lifelong process that enables people to reach IHD.
The promotion of gender equality to engage 100% of humanity in the sustainable development process.
The minimization of the rich/poor gap, again to engage 100% of humanity in the sustainable development process.
Fostering MDG8, i.e., solidarity, sustainability, subsidiarity, democracy, spirituality, and zero-tolerance for violence.
The translation of IHD into making common good decisions politically feasible and even politically expedient.
Making fully participative democracy the worldwide norm of governance.
Fostering technological innovation for the common good rather than just profit, especially regarding the energy sector.
Sections 3 to 8 of this issue elaborate on the meaning of these priorities and implications for future work.
In one of the invited papers included in this issue (page 3), Professor Susan Smalley of UCLA provides some grim statistics on gender violence. Another invited article this month (page 4), is an eyewitness account of abusive behavior against children -- especially girls. For more complete compilations of research and statistics on gender violence, see Violence Against Women and/or the Sexual Violence Research Initiative.
Due to gender imbalance in most secular and religious institutions, gender violence (under various disguises) starts early for most girls. The following series of reports by Plan International contain the evidence:
"Femicide is on the extreme end of a continuum of anti-female terror that includes a wide variety of verbal and physical abuse, such as rape, torture, sexual slavery (particularly in prostitution), incestuous and extra familial child sexual abuse, physical and emotional battery, sexual harassment (on the phone, in the streets, at the office, and in the classroom), genital mutilation (clitoridectomies, excision, infibulations), unnecessary gynecological operations (gratuitous hysterectomies), forced heterosexuality, forced sterilization, forced motherhood (by criminalizing contraception and abortion), psychosurgery, denial of food to women in some cultures, cosmetic surgery, and other mutilations in the name of beautification. Whenever these forms of terrorism result in death, they become femicides."
Diana E. H. Russell, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Sociology, Mills College, Oakland, California.
Millions of baby girls are aborted every year, just because they are girls. Secular authorities often remain silent and sometimes even support this barbaric behavior. With few exceptions, religious authorities also remain silent. The "phallic syndrome" is a universal disease that effectively kills any attempt to foster a culture of human solidarity and environmental sustainability. In fact, cross-gender solidarity is the indispensable foundation for sustainable development.
Gender equality and gender balance must be restored in all human institutions, both secular and religious; else, ESD is an exercise in futility, the MDGs are nothing but false hopes, and IHD is not even in the horizon.
The grim realities of gender inequality and the rich/poor gap are inseparable. It is well known that poverty has a feminine face. In terms of ESD and IHD, it is important to have a clear understanding of the word "poverty." Merriam-Webster defines poverty as "the state of one who lacks a usual or socially acceptable amount of money or material possessions." Wikipedia defines poverty as "the condition of not having the means to afford basic human needs such as clean water, nutrition, health care, clothing and shelter." This is extreme poverty, or destitution. Poverty is bad enough, but destitution is miserable.
Figure 3. Slum in Jakarta, Indonesia (Source: Wikipedia)
Extreme poverty, or destitution, is intrinsically perverse and incompatible with human dignity. IHD is a meaningless goal for people who are living in misery. Surely, MDG1 is about eradicating extreme poverty, and ESD must find ways to make people aware about such things as distributive justice and the moral imperative of human solidarity. The juxtaposition of people who live in opulence and people who live in misery is as obscene as pornography. It does not follow, however, that MDG1 and ESD should attempt to help each and every human being to live in opulence. For living in opulence might seem to be an attractive proposition but actually it is often detrimental for IHD.
In a recent article entitled Symbolic Poverty, Mats Winther offers an insightful analysis of materialistic opulence as a barrier to human development. Writing as a psychologist, he does not use the IHD terminology, but it is clear that this is what he is concerned about:
"Goodness is not coupled with instinct anymore. From the original Christian "morality of the heart" the Western world has gone over to an ethics by decree. This tells us Europeans, for instance, that we must take responsibility for all peoples of the earth, and also allow them shelter and free provision in our countries. But there is no feeling adaptation in this, it is a mere ethics of the intellect, wholly lacking in instinct. The intellectually moralistic aspiration that all suffering can be eradicated is a form of inflation, which will have dire repercussions on society in the future.
"In fact, the historical Jesus of Nazareth renounces riches and an opulent lifestyle. Instead he advances a frugal lifestyle. It's a mystery how his message has turned into its opposite, so that we now think that helping people out of poverty is the ideal Christian conduct. As is obvious from the scripture, Jesus saw material privation as a prerequisite of spiritual advancement. But we destroy people's chances of meaningful lives. We don't need to assume the role of benign worldly benefactors, spreading the gospel of materialism and worldly goods. This is downright anti-Christian."
Mats Winther, Symbolic Poverty, 2009.
Reprinted in page 5 of this issue.
In other words, a paucity of material possessions and comfort is conducive to IHD, but neither misery nor an opulent lifestyle is (see, for example, Matthew 19:23-24 and Luke 17:20-21). Of course, this insight is not exclusively Christian. Winther shows that it is the common legacy of wise persons from all ages and regions, from Chuang-tzu (China, 4th century BCE) to Marie-Louise von Franz (Switzerland, 20th century CE).
Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, recently gave a lecture on New Perspectives on Faith and Development. Same message:
"We are not trying to solve someone else's problem but to liberate ourselves from a toxic and unjust situation in which we, the prosperous, are less than human. The way forward is not simply the shedding of surplus wealth on to grateful recipients but an understanding that we are trying to take forward the process by which the other becomes as fully a 'giver' as I seek to be, so that the transaction by which I seek to bring about change in the direction of justice for another is one in which I come to be as much in the other's debt as they are in mine. The Christian foundation for a search for a more equal distribution of resources within and between societies is essentially about what might be called a proper 'distribution of dignity' – not a mechanically leveling process but one in which exchange becomes possible in new ways and so mutual enrichment of various sorts becomes a reality."
Rowan Williams, New Perspectives on Faith and Development, 2009.
Reprinted in page 2 of this issue.
It follows, therefore, that MDG1 and ESD should not make people think that unlimited "economic growth" and opulent lifestyles are the goals to be achieved. Rather, the wise path to pursue is to simultaneously moderate consumption and opulence in the developed countries and foster growth in the developing countries, but just enough to sustain a decent standard of living for everyone. And, let's keep in mind that globalization realities and distributive justice will have to reconcile unless all nations want to go from one bloody crisis to another.
What about the other MDGs? What about the forthcoming meeting on climate change in Copenhagen? The following is a causal-loop diagram (CLD) of the MDGs in the context of ESD:
Figure 4. What is the most vital ingredient of ESD and the MDGs?
ESD = Education for Sustainable Development (8 UNESCO themes)
IHD = Integral Human Development (basics to self-actualization)
MDG = Millennium Development Goals (UN MDGs 1 to 8)
A CLD, by identifying the feedback loops that interconnect the variables, provides a basis for developing a simulation model to analyze system behavior over time. In the case of intrinsically nonlinear social systems, such behavior is complex and even counterintuitive (see, for example, the Wikipedia article on System Dynamics.
When the world leaders meet in Copenhagen to discuss climate change and environmental sustainability (MDG7), it would be nice to give them a crystal ball capable of providing visibility into the future. Specifically, it would be nice to know how dealing with climate change (assuming a new "Kyoto protocol" is agreed upon) might affect the recovery from the world financial crisis and, inter alia, achieving the 2015 MDG targets. A diagram such as the CLD shown in Figure 4 surely does not provide a crystal ball. It but does provide, however, a useful tool to think about possible answers to questions such as: what is the most vital ingredient for ESD and the MDGs to attain (or come as close as possible to) the 2015 targets?
What follows is not an answer. It is just a mental simulation. It seems reasonable to think that MDG1, MDG2, and MDG3 reinforce each other. If so, they would have a positive impact on MDG4, MDG5, and MDG6. But progress will depend on how strong the reinforcement is between MDGs 1, 2, and 3. It also will depend on doing things in such as way that the planet's environment is not detrimentally affected (MDG7); else, environmental constraints may become developmental constraints. One way to get the ball rolling is to have a very strong and committed global partnership for development (MDG8), but it is hard to imagine that such partnership can materialize as long as we are, in the words of Archbishop Williams, "less than human." Bingo! The key is human development. Inner human growth is the only fuel that is capable of overcoming the "me, myself, and I" mentality.
In other words, the key is to focus ESD (and, especially, MDGs 1, 2, and 3) on integral human development (IHD). Then, to quote again from the archbishop's lecture, we can "liberate ourselves from a toxic and unjust situation in which we, the prosperous, are less than human." And then there can be a new "distribution of dignity" whereby all nations can work together for the common good. Else, the 2015 targets are nothing but a hypocritical exercise in playing with numbers.
In anticipation of the climate change meeting at Copenhagen, there has been much discussion about the lack of "political will" to take effective action. This is what prevented the United States of America from signing the Kyoto agreement, so "political will" (or the lack thereof) is crucial for progress to be made, especially at the international level.
What is "political will"? The following definition has been proposed:
"Our ideal-type definition of political will requires that a sufficient set of political actors with a common understanding of a particular problem on the public agenda genuinely intends to support a commonly perceived, potentially effective policy solution. This definition includes four different components, which we deem necessary conditions:
(1) A sufficient set of political actors
(2) With a common understanding of a particular problem on the public agenda
(3) Genuinely intends to support
(4) A commonly perceived, potentially effective policy solution.
We frame the definition in terms of necessary conditions because failure in any one of these areas detracts from the prospects for responsive and effective policymaking. The use of necessary conditions creates a relatively high hurdle for the existence of political will, but this hurdle is far from an impossible one to overcome."
Defining Political Will. Post, Lori., Raile, Amber. and Raile, Eric. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the NCA 94th Annual Convention, San Diego, CA, November 2008.
It is to be noted that the four conditions listed are necessary but not sufficient. Sufficiency would require a critical mass of political players who would not block substantiated, common good policy options. Consider the traits of self-actualized people at the top of Maslow's pyramid: "morality, creativity, spontaneity, problem solving, lack of prejudice, acceptance of facts." In other words, only a critical mass of politicians and citizens at the top of Maslow's pyramid is sufficient for "political will" to coalesce. Isn't this what IHD is all about?
In Figure 4, the arrow that goes from IHD to MDG8 requires a communication path. Even if IHD already encapsulates "political will" to make decisions and take action for the common good, there must be a concrete political system to enable people to participate in formulating the decisions and implementing the actions. Theocracies and absolute monarchies are notorious for concentrating too much power in too few hands. Dictatorships of either socialist (extreme left) or capitalist (extreme right) flavors have proven to be even worst. Democracies are never perfect, but democracy is the most sensible choice as a system of governance for human societies; and even more so for societies engaged in sustainable development.
The principle of subsidiarity is key for democratic governance, and even more so when it is a matter of democratic governance for sustainable development. A definition of the principle of subsidiarity can be found here and here. Subsidiarity as a principle of governance is implicit in the American constitution and has been explicitly incorporated in the constitution of the European Union.
Basically, subsidiarity is the investment of authority at the lowest possible level of an institutional hierarchy. In other words, higher authorities should undertake only the tasks that cannot be done satisfactorily by lower authorities. Concentration of power at the highest level inevitably leads to bureaucratic decisions that are divorced from local realities. On the other hand, concentration of power at the lowest level inevitably leads to myopic decisions and actions that have negative impact on the common good. It follows that sustainable development decisions should be taken at the lowest possible level consistent with the global common good.
Obviously, local issues of sustainable development should be resolved locally, and national issues should be resolved at the national level. But what about global issues? As the climate change impacts of excessive air pollution have made abundantly clear, global issues require global solutions. This is what the Kyoto protocol was all about, and this is what the forthcoming meeting in Copenhagen is all about. Sooner or later (and probably sooner rather than later) the worldwide community of nations will have to face the need for some form of global governance.
Whether or not the United Nations can be reformed to assume such a mission remains to be seen. In the age of globalization, another emerging issue is the competition for global influence between the nation-states and the multi-national corporations (see the recent article by Harris Gleckman, Contested Governance in a Global-Corporate World). Somehow, all nations will have to elect a global body of government with proper authority and responsibility in both the private and public spheres. In any case, the IHD foundation is essential and the subsidiarity principle is instrumental.
IHD is instrumental for MDG8 and/or the effectiveness of any eventual form of global governance. It is also instrumental for implementing and practicing the principle of subsidiarity. Having a critical mass of citizens who can "think globally and act locally" and "think locally and act globally" is essential for democratic governance to work at all levels for the common good. Indeed, developing such critical mass of capable people is what IHD is all about, isn't it?
The kind of technological innovation that we need is not the one that pursues the creation of superfluous widgets for the sake of quick profits. Technological innovation that rationalizes further use of materials and energy sources that are harmful to the human habitat is not a long-term solution either. Who wants to prolong the agony of the "peak oil" transition?
Technological innovation should be geared to satisfying human needs and taking good care of the human habitat. For instance, let's consider the issue of energy supply and consumption. A Path to Sustainable Energy by 2030, by Mark Z. Jacobson and Mark A. Delucchi, Scientific American, November 2009, pp. 58-65, is a lucid explanation of the tradeoffs between renewable and non-renewable sources of energy. It also provides visibility on technological alternatives that are feasible and could shorten the environmentally abusive consumption of fossil fuels.
The following is a causal-loop diagram (CLD) of the world energy system in the context of the MDGs, ESDs, and IHD:
Figure 6. A Hypothesis for the Process of Switching from Fossil Fuels
to Clean Energy in the Context of the MDGs, ESDs, and IHD
A CLD, by identifying the feedback loops that interconnect the variables, provides a basis for developing a simulation model to analyze system behavior over time (see, for example, the Wikipedia article on
System Dynamics and the US Department of Energy's
Introduction to System Dynamics). The CLD shows the flows of energy, material resources, and population. Energy can come from either fossil fuels or clean renewable sources such as wind, water, and solar.
Material resources are produced, consumed, and disposed of. Both burning energy and discarding consumed materials create pollution (including toxic wastes) in the environment. Pollution has been accumulating since the industrial revolution, and very fast in recent decades due to massive burning of fossil fuels and the widespread use of pesticides
Meadows & Meadows,
Hall & Day).
And, as Vandana Shiva has pointed out, "resources flow from the poor to the rich, and pollution flows from the rich to the poor."
The three phases of population correspond to the so-called first phase (0-30 years old), second phase (30-60 years old), and third phases of life (60+ years old). The analytical versatility of this method allows the inclusion of some of the more difficult but critical variable, such as the fraction of people climbing Maslow's pyramid toward IHD and the nebulous but indispensable "political will."
Figure 7. Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Human Needs
As it becomes increasingly more costly to find and extract fossil fuels, the net cost of rebuilding the energy infrastructure to switch from fossil fuels to clean energy sources such as wind, waves, water, and solar; this should enhance "political will" for the switch. But even if the economics are in favor of switching, vested interests and corruption may still try to perpetuate the use of fossil fuels. The key for resisting and overcoming these pressures is IHD. As more people attain a higher degree of IHD, the better informed electorates should become more demanding of political transparency and willingness to make decisions for the common good; then, and only then, making the switch becomes politically feasible.
When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road your trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.
Life is queer with its twists and its turns,
As everyone of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about
When they might have won, had they stuck it out.
Don't give up though the pace seems slow,
You may succeed with another blow.
Often the struggler has given up
When he might have captured the victors cup;
And he learned too late when the night came down,
How close he was to the golden crown.
Success is failure turned inside out
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far;
So stick to the fight when your hardest hit,
It's when things seem worst that you must not quit!
QUESTION: Is this the time to quit building a new world of solidarity, sustainability, and nonviolence?
FOR STUDY AND REFLECTION
The Myth of Sustainable development
They told me our life is no good
In the bundus, in the villages, in the deeps
Beyond the cities
Eating like my elders did
Living like my elders did
It took me a long time
To change the way I live.
But change - I did
To develop myself and my children
To become civilized, modern.
My elders tilled their soil
Waited for the moon
Listened to the birds
Looked for signs in the meadows
when to sow and what to sow.
No slave to money and machines,
They lived long and healthy
In the mountains and meadows, valleys and creeks
With reverence to the sacred land
That nurtured their soul and fed their body.
My elders were called ignorant
Primitive and backward
So they sent me to school
To become modern and forward
To become civilized and developed.
I changed my food
Eating food I no longer know where from
Whose farm no-name food no-man’s land.
Food Fed by poisons
Shaped by machines
Slick and smart
With artificial colorants and flavors.
It no longer feeds my soul
Just bloats my stomach
Sluggish and sick
With no real energy.
I became a bundle of ailments
My GP my medical-aid
Happy and smiling
Making a living
On perpetually sick living.
Then came the day
When I was sent off to
Some big meetings full of experts and
Know-it-all talkers, real do-gooders ...
By the time they finished,
I felt cheated and robbed
While pretending to be the experts
All they gave was the story of my elders.
First they told my people
They were backward and primitive
Then they made my generation sick and lost
Then they stole the wisdom from my elders
And now they sell it back to me and my children
For a price, a big price, and call it
But they can't read the signs
They don't follow the moon
Nor do they know how to read weather
From the blossom’s on the meadows.
Tell me how can they sustain
This thing called "Sustainable development"
When it has never been lived by the experts.
Tell me how .... Tell me how ....
Nirmala Nair, India, 2 September 2004
QUESTION: Is this the time to despair because the complexity of sustainable development is beyond our minds?
FOR ADMIRATION AND IMITATION
Mary Visits Elizabeth
39 At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town
in the hill country of Judea,
40 where she entered Zechariah's home and greeted Elizabeth.
41 When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting,
the baby leaped in her womb,
and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.
42 In a loud voice she exclaimed:
"Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the child you will bear!
43 But why am I so favored,
that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
44 As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears,
the baby in my womb leaped for joy.
45 Blessed is she who has believed
that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!"
46 And Mary said: "My soul glorifies the Lord
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is his name.
50 His mercy extends to those who fear him,
from generation to generation.
51 He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;
he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
52 He has brought down rulers from their thrones
but has lifted up the humble.
53 He has filled the hungry with good things
but has sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
remembering to be merciful
55 to Abraham and his descendants forever,
even as he said to our fathers."
56 Mary stayed with Elizabeth for about three months
and then returned home.
Luke 1: 39-56
QUESTION: Isn't this the time to imitate this woman we know as Mary, who walked the talk before talking the walk?
Gender equity is a "sign of the times." Gender inequities are universally rooted in the utter misconception (the so-called "phallic syndrome") that men are superior to women, and lead to incalculable forms of physical and psychological gender violence. It follows, that gender inequities constitute a huge obstacle to human solidarity and sustainable development. It is imperative to overcome, sooner rather than later, gender inequities in both secular and religious institutions, because human development stagnates in the absence of gender balance, and this cannot possibly be what God desires.
Rev. Ann Tiemeyer
Director of Women’s Ministries, National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA
Source: Circle of Names, NCCCUSA
Unity in diversity enriches both the individual and the community, and so does diversity in unity. Unity in uniformity enriches neither the individual nor the community, and forced uniformity never leads to unity of hearts. In fact, forced uniformity leads to a fossilization of human relations that eventually corrupts unity and brings about tensions and even violence. For neither individuals nor communities can stay healthy (let alone happy) when confined to any form of straitjacket. Both human development and community development wither when constrained by forced uniformities. It follows that unity in uniformity makes sustainable development impossible. But sustainable development flourishes when unity and diversity enhance each other, thus enabling humanity to forge ahead along the path of peace and justice.
ROAD TO NUCLEAR ZERO AND ARMS CONTROL Sponsored by the International School on Disarmament and Research on Conflicts (ISODARCO), Università di Roma "Tor Vergata," Rome, Italy. Location: Andalo (Trento). Dates: 10-17 January 2010. The 2010 ISODARCO Winter School will be devoted to the practical steps to be implemented to arrive to a nuclear-weapon free world, with emphasis on the potential role for arms control. Apply on-line at the ISODARCO web site or download an application form from the same location. Applications should arrive not later than 16 November 2009 and should be addressed to the Director of the School, Prof. Carlo Schaerf
NEW GREEN ECONOMY The National Council for Science and the Environment (NCSE) is pleased to request your participation at the 10th National Conference for Science, Policy and the Environment: The New Green Economy: Aligning Science, Education, Markets and Systems for Sustainability to be held January 20-22, 2010 at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, DC. Please plan to join NCSE in a large interactive conference to develop and advance science-based solutions for the creation of a “green print” to achieve a sustainable, new green economy. See the conference website. Questions? Contact the NCSE Green Economy Conference
ENERGY TRANSITIONS Energy transitions in an interdependent world. Sponsored by the Science & Technology Policy Research Group, University of Sussex. The conference will be held at the University of Sussex, near Brighton, on the 25th and 26th February 2010. Further details including the full conference call and application guidelines are available from the conference web site. Point of contact: Lee Stapleton.
GOING GLOBAL The UK's International Education Conference, Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, Central London, 24-26 March, 2010. This year's conference theme is "World Potential: Making Education Meet the Challenfe." Is the vision of a truly international education system under threat? In the face of the worst recession in decades are countries becoming increasingly isolationist? If so, what are the implications for international education? How is the global mobility of staff and students being affected and what should they do? And how does it impact the sharing of knowledge and ideas worldwide? Visit the conference website and/or contact the British Council.
EVO-ENVIRONMENT EvoEnvironment 2, an event of the EvoApplications Conference is devoted to the use of nature inspired methods for environmental issues. Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey, 7th - 9th April 2010. Further details including the full conference call and application guidelines are available from the EvoStar 2010 Web Site. Points of contact: Marc Ebner, University of Tuebingen, Germany, and Neil Urquhart, Edinburgh Napier University, UK.
NEW ECONOMIC THINKING Inaugural conference of the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET). Theme: "The Economics of Crisis and the Crisis in Economics: Implications for Economic Theory and Regulatory Policy." April 8th to April 11th, 2010, Kings College, University of Cambridge, UK. With the participation of leading economists and policymakers including Nobel Laureates George Akerlof, Sir James Mirrlees, A. Michael Spence and Joseph Stiglitz. Contact: Robert Johnson.
GLOBAL HEALTH The World's Leading Idea Incubator For Global Health Innovation A Conference Presented Annually by Unite For Sight. Saturday, April 17 - Sunday, April 18, 2010. Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA. The Global Health & Innovation Summit convenes more than 2,200 participants from 55 countries. The Summit challenges students, professionals, educators, doctors, scientists, lawyers, universities, corporations, nonprofits, and others, to develop innovative, effective solutions to achieve global goals. Visit the conference web site for registration and contact information.
APPLIED ENERGY International Conference on Applied Energy (ICAE2010). Sponsored by the University of Singapore. Theme: "Energy Solutions for a Sustainable World." 21-23 April 2010, Singapore. Call for papers and other conference information: ICAE 2010 Web Site. Point of contact: ICAE 2010.
GLOBAL LANDSCAPES The interdisciplinary conference “Global Landscapes: Ethics, Entrepreneurship and Organizations in an Era of Global Economic and Financial Crisis” will assemble scholars, educators, graduate and undergraduate students, and community members interested in ethics, entrepreneurship, and organizations. 22-23 April 2010, King’s College, Wilkes-Barre, PA, USA. Visit the Conference Web Site. Point of contact: Conference Chair.
SELF-DETERMINATION The 4th International Conference on Self-Determination Theory (SDT) will be held at Ghent University (Belgium), May 13-16, 2010. More information about the conference is provided in the SDT Conference Web Site, including guidelines for papers and posters submissions. Point of contact: Maarten Vansteenkiste.
JEAN PIAGET SOCIETY Join social scientists and educators from around the world as they explore new and compelling research on the development of self-regulation and autonomy. 40th Annual Meeting of the Jean Piaget Society. Theme: "Self-Regulation and Autonomy: Exploring Social, Developmental, and Educational Currents of Human Conduct." St. Louis, Missouri, USA, 3-5 June 2010. For more details see the conference website. Point of contact: Frederick Grouzet.
URBAN & ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES & POLICIES First International Congress on Urban and Environmental Issues and Policies, 3-5 June 2010, Trabzon, Turkey. The aim of the congress is to give opportunity to approach urban and environmental issues and policies in terms of social sciences (politics, economics, management, law, sociology, etc.). For more information visit the congress website and/or contact the secretariat: Karadeniz Technical University, Faculty of Administrative and Economical Sciences, Department of Public Administration, Trabzon, Turkey, INTERCONURBEN.
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN FOOD & AGRICULTURE International Symposium: Innovation and Sustainable Development in Food & Agriculture (June 28-July 1, 2010, Montpellier, France). Theme: "Facing the crisis and growing uncertainties, can science and societies reinvent agricultural and food systems to achieve sustainability?" Sponsored by CIRAD. For more information: ISDA 2010 Web Site. Email: ISDA 2010.
SOCIOLOGY CONGRESS International Sociological Association (ISA) World Congress of Sociology, 11-17 July 2010, Gothenburg, Sweden. Session on "Peace, Conflict, and Climate Change" currently scheduled for Wednesday 14 July 2010. See the conference web site for more details or contact the conference chair, Hans Joas, Universität Erfurt, Germany.
SYSTEM DYNAMICS 2010 International Conference of the System Dynamics Society, Seoul, Korea, July 25 - 29, 2010. The main theme will be "Beyond the Crisis: Greening Economy, Society and Future," reflecting global concerns about the environment and economic problems. Conference Chair: Man-Hyung Lee, Chungbuk National University. Points of contact: Program Chair or Seoul Conference Team.
SOCIOLOGY OF RELIGION NCSR 2010: The 20th Nordic Conference in Sociology of Religion. August 4 - 6, 2010 at University of Agder Kristiansand, Norway. Theme: "Multi-Religious Societies: Polarization, Co-existence, Indifference." Visit the conference website or contact Professor Pål Repstad, University of Agder, Norway.
ECOLOGICAL ECONOMICS ISEE 2010. This is the 11th Biennial Conference of the International Society for Ecological Economics (ISEE). Theme: "Advancing Sustainability in a Time of Crisis." To take place in Oldenburg and Bremen, Germany, 22 - 25 August 2010. For more information visit the conference web site. A presentation containing general information about the conference can be downloaded here. The point of contact is Prof. Bernd Siebenhüner, Oldenburg University.
EUROPEAN POPULATION CONFERENCE The European Association for Population Studies invites contributions to the European Population Conference to be held in Vienna, 1-4 September 2010. The EPC 2010 is a general scientific conference where the theme Population and Environment will receive special attention.
For questions concerning the meeting please contact EAPS, the European Association for Population Studies.
STUDY OF THE COMMONS The International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) has announced its 13th biennial conference. The conference will be hosted by Foundation for Ecological Security (FES). It will take place in Hyderabad, India, 10 - 14th January 2011. To visit the IASCP web site, click here. A PDF file containing general information about the conference can be downloaded here. For more information contact IASC executive director, Jim Robson.
PEACE CONVOCATION The International Ecumenical Peace Convocation (IEPC) will be the Harvest Festival of the Decade to Overcome Violence and at the same time a planting season for fresh initiatives. May 2011, Kingston, Jamaica. Sponsored by the World Council of Churches (WCC). Visit the IEPC web site, which provides points of contact worldwide.
CALL FOR PAPERS SUSTAINABILITY SCIENCE Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). PNAS has launched a new section of the journal dedicated to sustainability science, an emerging field of research dealing with the interactions between natural and social systems, and with how those interactions affect the challenge of sustainability: meeting the needs of present and future generations while substantially reducing poverty and conserving the planet’s life support systems. PNAS seeks original research contributions for this new section on both the fundamental character of interactions among humans, their technologies, and the environment, and on the use of such knowledge to advance sustainability goals relevant to water, food, energy, health, habitation, mobility, and ecosystem services. PNAS welcomes outstanding sustainability science papers addressing spatial scales from the global to the local and drawing on a wide range of disciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches. For more information, please contact Josiah Armour.
CALL FOR PAPERS RELIGION & SPIRITUALITY This issue of Feminist Review, edited by Lyn Thomas and Avtar Brah, will explore a range of religious and spiritual practices through the lens of gender, and will encompass both theoretical and empirical approaches. We hope to engage with feminism’s long history of critique of the patriarchal nature of world religions such as Christianity, Judaism and Islam, and more recent problematisations of these approaches in light of feminism’s relationship to the Enlightenment and to colonialism. Recent work on the gendering of secularisation theories and on women’s practice of faith and spirituality has complicated and nuanced feminist approaches to religion; this issue will address these questions, while attempting to broaden the debate beyond the binary oppositions and alignments of religion (and most notably Islam) with tradition and ‘backwardness’, and of feminisms with modernity and secularism. Submissions for the issue are welcomed from now until February 28th, 2010. Point of contact: Dr Lyn Thomas.
INTERNATIONAL ECUMENICAL PEACE CONVOCATION
Kingston, Jamaica, will be the host city for the International Ecumenical Peace Convocation in May 2011. The convocation is sponsored by the World Council of Churches (WCC) and will meet under the theme "Glory to God and peace on earth". It will be the culmination of the WCC's Decade to Overcome Violence (DOV), which has sought to network and bring attention to the peacemaking initiatives of its various member churches. Read the convocation announcement.