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The Killam Conversation - Can Environmental Science Save the Earth?

Community Event
Mar 9 2010 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm

In the aftermath of the Copenhagen summit on climate change, and its apparent failure to institute substantive policy change, it seems appropriate to focus the inaugural Killam Conversation at UBC on the capacity of environmental science to effect robust change among those setting policy particularly in response to climate change. Is there a veritable Two Solitudes existing between the scientific community and those tasked with decision-making?

The conversation will bring together researchers in the fields of atmospheric pollution, resource consumption, sustainable environmental practice, ecological policy from the sociological and global economy perspectives, and decision making processes in the political context. Allied to those questions are the interface between environmental scientists and decision makers. How can we, for example, develop means by which there is greater interchange and negotiation about both the problems to be addressed and the means for their alleviation? Underlying these factors are questions of authority and legitimacy, including scientific peer review with respect to environmental research or the place allotted to non-expert stakeholders in decision making.