Last year saw one of the most historically symbolic events of recent years – 195 countries signing the Paris Agreement in order to cut back on pollution contributing to climate change. So when on the 1st June of this year President Donald Trump announced that he would pull the US out of the agreement, there was a huge reaction, with many of the leaders of countries around the world expressing their dismay.
The Paris Agreement complements other related global initiatives such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which allow companies to report information on sustainable development performance using common indicators and a shared set of priorities. They also provide a framework allowing deeper conversations and the building of stronger relationships with the not-for-profit and NGO sector. This allows commercial organisations to implement systemic solutions which authentically engage both their customers and also a wider range of stakeholders, such as the local communities in which a business is present.
Following his announcement, many very senior business and political leaders in the US responded by declaring their continued support, such as New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, saying that:
“The US will meet our Paris commitment and through a partnership among American cities, states, and businesses, we will seek to remain part of the Paris Agreement process. The American government may have pulled out of the agreement, but the American people remain committed to it – and we will meet our targets.”
Given the impact and repercussions of these events, I am very happy to announce that on Saturday 8th July I will be hosting a webinar with Fritjof Capra and Daniel Christian Wahl in which we will be discussing practical responses and systemic solutions to our global problems.
Fritjof Capra, Ph.D., I am sure will need little introduction. He is a scientist, educator, activist, and author of many international bestsellers that connect conceptual changes in science with broader changes in worldview and values in society. His books include The Tao of Physics; The Web of Life: A New Synthesis of Mind and Matter; The Turning Point: Science, Society and the Rising Culture; The Hidden Connections: A Science for Sustainable Living; and Learning from Leonardo: Decoding the Notebooks of a Genius. His current major project is Capra Course, his new on-line course based on The Systems View of Life.
I am also pleased to introduce Daniel Christian Wahl, author of Designing Regenerative Cultures which I reviewed a few months ago. Daniel works internationally as a consultant and educator in regenerative development, whole systems design, and transformative innovation. He was director of Findhorn College between 2007 and 2010, and is a member of the International Futures Forum since 2009 and Gaia Education since 2007. He has collaborated with UNITAR and UNESCO, many large NGO, and as a consultant he has worked with companies such as Camper, Ecover and Lush, as well as, with UK Foresight and the Commonwealth Secretariat.
In terms of the main themes we will be discussing, we will be taking a look at the Earth Charter Initiative. Fritjof is one of the leading members of the Earth Charter Council, and it will be fascinating to hear more about the history of the Earth Charter and how it can contribute to a reduction of the many conflicts we are facing at this present moment.
A second major theme we will be discussing is ‘regeneration’. This term is now coming to the fore, with many practitioners sensing a loss of meaning in the term ‘sustainability’. For many years Fritjof has discussed the need to shift away from life-destroying business models, to life enhancing ones, and I am looking forward to Daniel’s contributions as a leading thinker on regeneration, with many years of experience contributing to large-scale regenerative projects.
And finally we will also be looking at the role commercial organisations can play in the shift to regenerative economic models. In the Spring 2017 edition of Capra Course which recently came to an end, there was a lively discussion around Fritjof’s notion of “meaningful disturbances” and how these can be utilised to generate meaningful change inside organisations. So I will be asking where the inspiration for this term came from, and what are the practical ways in which it can be introduced when working with enterprises.
Our conversation will be wide-ranging, and I am sure we will be looking at many different aspects of The Systems View of Life, as well as exploring the emerging discipline of Ecological Economics, especially as Fritjof will soon be publishing a major academic article on this theme, co-authored with his friend and colleague Ove Jakobsen. Fritjof has just published a new article Transformative Ecological Economics on his website on this theme, and many of you will find interesting.
The webinar will be broadcast live on Saturday 8th July, 11am Pacific, 2pm EST, 3pm Brasilia, 7pm UK, 8pm Central Europe.
No registration is required. You will be able to watch on Youtube here and share comments with fellow viewers during transmission.
The webinar will be recorded for those of you not able to join us on Saturday.
Registration for the Fall 2017 edition of Capra Course is now open. For further information, please visit the Capra Course website: www.capracourse.net.
We are grateful to the Emerging Future Institute for their support for this webinar.