Humanities Forum - Green Smeen: Why do we need Sustainable Development?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 ( 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm )

Location: Morton 324

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November 6, 2013. "Green Smeen: Why do we need Sustainable Development?"
A talk by Dawn Digrius.

The 1972 book The Limits to Growth outlined the problems faced by an ever-increasing population with only finite resource supplies. That same year, the United Nations convened in Stockholm to address global environmental problems. Fifteen years later, the United Nations World Commission on Development investigated the problem of limited resource availability and human growth, resulting in the document “Our Common Future.” Then in 2012, the United Nations and the Brazilian government hosted a follow-up conference on sustainable development, laying a global plan for sustainability which was described in the document “The Future We Want.” And yet, after almost fifty years of attention to the problem of sustainable development, no clear path has emerged for its solution.

In this talk historian Dawn Digrius will examine why this is the case. Leveraging the new arena for discourse known as the “High Level Forum,” Digrius will argue that Stevens Institute of Technology can play a vital role in the conversation on and action plan for sustainable development in the post-2015 goals of the U.N.

Dawn M. Digrius (Ph.D, Drew University 2007) serves as Assistant Professor of History at Stevens Institute of Technology, and Co-Vice President of the International Health Awareness Network, a 501(c)3 non-governmental organization affiliated with the Economic and Social Council and the Department of Public Information of the United Nations. Since 2011, Digrius has overseen research in coastal Ecuador, examining the intersection of water management and sustainability in Latin America. She has organized and presented lectures on sustainable development at Montclair State University, United Nations Headquarters, and at the Rio+ 20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012. Her upcoming book, Sin el Agua no hay Vida, investigates the long history of water management in Latin America and the evolution of unsustainable water management practices in the modern era.