Educate. Connect. Inspire

Educate. Connect. Inspire

Oct 4, 2012

Notes from the Global Conference on Sustainable Development / Evian 2012

By Yula Pannadopoulos

The last week of September was marked by the Global Conference on Sustainable Development, organized by PlanetWorkshops in Evian, France, and under the high patronage of the French Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, and under the patronage of the Representation in France of the European Commission.

In a time when globalization has become a reality for all and civil society progressively gains influence, it is necessary to implement a constructive approach in order to achieve efficient and shared solutions. "Cooperation", "Stakeholders collaboration", "Collective intelligence"are now the core subjects of a required action. How can we structure this ideal of dialogue between all actors of society without denying the advantage of competition?

The international multilateral system now seems inadequate regarding the needed answers to current challenges.
The evolution of economic models is a real opportunity for extraordinary cooperation. However, the crisis we are experiencing have awaken protectionist reflexes. Climate and biodiversity are two examples of common goods for which construction has been sacrificed to the competition logic. How can we conciliate logic of competition and need for collaboration?

On a financial, technological and social point of view, solutions already exist to co-construct the urgently needed changes. They imply deep modications in our attitudes and represent real revolutions. 

If access to energy is a major issue, the question of energy management is equally important. A better management of energy production and consumption allows re-thinking our places of life and our territories. Thus, how can energy management be an asset to building sustainable territories?

Every year, millions of people choose to settle in cities or suburbs of big urban areas. Wishing to access employment and basic service and to improve the quality of life, the world's population is attracted by urban life. However, some of these urban spaces can no longer meet the basic needs of these populations. But is a desirable urban ecosystem really possible?

The consumer is today a central actor of transformation of our economic. models. Internet and social networks have become extraordinary tools for sharing information and for citizen's commitment. How can these tools become real instruments of a responsible consumption?

Facing the excesses of our production and consumption models, it is imperative to develop new business models. The low carbon economy, which aims at reducing carbon dioxide emissions, seems to be one of these new models. How could collaborative economy allow us to achieve a low carbon economy?

Town and country planning is a major component of the human environment. Spatial planning and occupation policies must favor a healthy environment, conductive to populations' well-being. How to re-think the organization of territories to improve human health?

These are just some of the issues, topics and questions raised and discussed during the conference, and the best way to experience the atmosphere of a conference dialogue is to see the videos:

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