Katherine Lorenz - Perspectives on Limits to Growth
The Club of Rome and the Smithsonian Institution’s Consortium for Understanding and Sustaining a Biodiverse Planet hosted a one-day symposium on March 1, 2012 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the launching of Limits to Growth, the first report to the Club of Rome published in 1972. This book was one of the earliest scholarly works to recognize that the world was fast approaching its sustainable limits. Forty years later, the planet continues to face many of the same economic, social, and environmental challenges as when the book was first published.
The morning session focused on the lessons of Limits to Growth. The afternoon session addressed the difficult challenges of preserving biodiversity, adjusting to a changing climate, and solving the societal issues now facing the planet. The symposium ended with a thought-provoking panel discussion among the speakers on future steps for building a sustainable planet.
The symposium was webcast live, and has been archived for later viewing, on this page. An event program is available for download (http://si.edu/Content/consortia/limits-to-growth.pdf) along with the PowerPoint presentation from speaker Dennis Meadows (http://si.edu/Content/consortia/Dennis_Meadows.pptx).
Katherine Lorenz was elected President of the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation in January 2011. Before taking on this role, she served nearly three years as Deputy Director for the Institute for Philanthropy, whose mission is to increase effective philanthropy in the UK and internationally, and she now sits on the Institute’s Board of Directors. Prior to her work with the Institute for Philanthropy, Ms. Lorenz lived and worked in Oaxaca, Mexico for nearly six years where she co-founded Puente a la Salud Comunitaria, a non-profit organization working to eradicate malnutrition and advance food sovereignty in rural Oaxaca through the integration of amaranth into the local diet. She continues to be highly involved with Puente’s work as an active Board Member. Before founding Puente, Lorenz spent two summers living and working in rural, poor communities in Latin America with the volunteer program Amigos de las Américas and later served on their Program Committee and as a trustee of the Foundation for Amigos de las Américas. Additionally, she currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the Endowment for Regional Sustainability Science and the Amaranth Institute and formerly was a Board Member of Resource Generation. Along with her family, Ms. Lorenz is a member of the Global Philanthropists Circle (through the Synergos Institute) and is an active participant in the GPC Next Generation subgroup. She sits on the Council on Foundations Committee on Family Philanthropy and serves on their 2012 Family Philanthropy Conference Planning Task Force. Ms. Lorenz holds a B.A. in Economics and Spanish from Davidson College.
One of the coolest element’s of PopTech’s recent Climate Resilience Lab was the introduction of a new game that forces participants to consider gender’s role in climate adaptation:
To help shake things up on the first day of the gathering, Pablo Suarez, of the Red Cross/Red Crescent Climate Centre, and Janot Mendler Suarez, who created the Games for a New Climate Task Force at Boston University, debuted a new game designed to help players consider the role of gender in decision-making, specifically in decisions about how best to adapt to a changing climate.
Climate Chain – visualizing natural ecosystems and the goods and services humans have extracted from them in the last 50 years.