Dr. Digrius Attends the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro

From 13-22 June 2012, Dr. Dawn Digrius, Assistant Professor of History, Stevens Institute of Technology attended the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, known as Rio+20 in Rio de Janeiro. This conference brought together world leaders, members of higher education, civil society, industry and others twenty years after the first Earth Summit in Brazil in 1992, to discuss and create an outcome document that represents a commitment to and strategies for sustainable development globally. Digrius, who co-sponsored and presented in a side event entitled “Without Water there is No Life: Educational Component,” spoke about the need for educational tools that promote sustainability in the STEM disciplines, but also in the humanities and social sciences. Using her research project in Coastal Ecuador as a model, Digrius created a lesson plan module for rural communities stressing sustainable water and agricultural practices. During the conference, Digrius met many high level governmental officials from countries such as Curacao, Iraq, Algeria, Morocco, Israel, and Belgium. She also networked with individuals representing NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) from places such as Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Canada, and Israel. Her goal was to provide research, internship, and other opportunities for Stevens Students that stress sustainability and afford them real-world experience. Digrius intends to create several new courses on the History of Sustainability, History of Water Resource Management, and History of Sustainable Development Policy.