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Re-thinking Sustainability: New directions for Rio+20?

Oxford Brookes University, Gipsy Lane, Buckley Building BG01
4 February 2011 11:00-16:30

Ecological Citizenship and The Art of Changing One's Mind(set)
Interdisciplinary Symposia - Seminars - Dialogue Processes

A series of events, hosted by the Social Sculpture Research Unit; the Arts, Culture, Sustainability Oxford Brookes University university-wide research forum and ARP - the Arts Practice Research cluster at Oxford Brookes.

This introductory presentation will reflect on (1) the history and range of sustainability definitions, (2) global achievements in the name of sustainability since the Rio Environment Summit 1992, and especially on (3) the current need to reframe and revive the notion of sustainability in tangible, operationally relevant ways in the context of Rio+20.

Lecture-Participatory Seminar.  There is no fee for this day, but participants are challenged to contribute their own experiences and visions for the road ahead. 

Dr Maritta Koch-Weser
Maritta Koch-Weser is Founder and President of Earth3000, an international NGO that supports strategic innovations in governance for environment and development, combining academic, advisory and board engagements. She coordinates a program on Amazonia at the Institute of Advanced Studies, University of Sao Paulo. Prior to this she worked for 20 years at the World Bank, where she was responsible for major sustainable development programs and held senior management positions in sustainable development for the Asia and Latin America & Caribbean programs. She has been Director General of IUCN -The World Conservation Union, and CEO of the Global Exchange for Social Investment, a development initiative supporting emerging social business and entrepreneurship, originated by the World Economic Forum. Her work at Earth3000 builds on over 3 decades in international development, as anthropologist and environmentalist. She has field experience in Latin America, South & East Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe & countries of the Former Soviet Union and has led major environmental & social assessment tasks, and investment programs in the agriculture, forestry, mining, energy, and urban-industrial sectors. Her interdisciplinary interests include the role of creative methodologies in attitudinal change and in social sculpture processes linking imagination and transformation.

Maritta Koch-Weser holds a Ph.D. from Bonn and Cologne Universities, and a 2010 Honorary Doctorate from Oxford Brookes University. She has taught Anthropology and Latin American Studies at George Washington University in Washington D.C., and carried out extensive field work in Brazil.

Free event, please bring your own refreshments.  Lunch can be purchased in the near-by canteen.

For information please contact Lucy Turner.


Other events in this series:

Friday 18 February
Taking Goethe seriously - stretching our thinking
Allan Kaplan


Monday 21 February 
Aesthetic Education and Poetic Imagination: key tools for social and ecological change
Dr Wolfgang Zumdick


Friday 4 March  
Knowledge as process of transformation... and how aesthetic practice can contribute to it
Professor Dr Alex Arteaga 


Friday 18 March  
A one-day symposium and dialogue process with contributions from 3 leading figures in the field of arts and sustainability
Dr Arran Stibbe, Dr Hildegard Kurt and Peter Gingold


10 - 23 July 2011
For more information about the summer school please see


Contact Name:
Lucy Turner
Contact Email:

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