Frances Westley is a Canadian treasure. Not enough people know that. I am biased because she is a friend and colleague. Sometimes we don't appreciate how special someone is until the world takes notice.
I can't think of a more prestigious body to take notice of Frances than Nobel prize winners. Between May 16th and 19th Frances will lead a discussion at the 3rd Nobel Laureate Symposium on Global Sustainability in Stockholm Sweden. Half the attendees will be Nobel Laureates, the other half will be some of the world's most renowned thinkers. And that's where Frances belongs.
Climate change, decreasing biodiversity, deteriorating ecosystems, poverty and exclusion all contribute to reducing the planet’s resilience and may have catastrophic implications for humanity.
Each of these problems has attracted great attention from the international community, but they have invariably been considered in isolation, with little or no regard to the interactions between them.
It is time to change this approach. And Frances can help. Her insights into social and ecological resilience have provided the intellectual framework for Social Innovation Generation.
Here is an appealing U-tube video description of the event she will be attending. And here is a recent lecture by Frances on a Complexity approach to Change and Transformation.
The discussions at the Symposium will culminate in a memorandum signed by key Nobel Laureates. This memorandum will be communicated and handed over to the High-Level Panel on Global Sustainability appointed by the UN Secretary General to reflect on and formulate a new vision for sustainable development and prosperity, along with the mechanisms for achieving this vision.
The 3rd Symposium follows previous meetings in Potsdam and London, and will focus on the need for integrated approaches that deal with the synergies, conflicts and trade-offs between the individual components of climate change.
The Symposium is organized by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm Resilience Centre at Stockholm University, Stockholm Environment Institute, Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics and Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact Research.
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