Dear Future Earth members and other colleagues,
Most attention to date regarding COVID-19 has justifiably focused on the public health dimensions of the pandemic which have already been dire in a number of countries and are likely to become more challenging as it continues its march around the world. We extend our deepest sympathy to colleagues on the frontlines of the outbreak, to people who have suffered losses, and to everyone subjected to profound disruption.
However, if we look a little further down the road, might there be emerging a window of opportunity to alter the trajectory of global development with respect to consumption and lifestyles, especially in relatively affluent countries?
We invite you to join us for an open forum on how the outbreak might contribute to a sustainability transition.
When: March 26th, Thursday, 2020
RSVP here: https://forms.gle/W6nhV576KafenJdZ6
As the COVID-19 pandemic touches every aspect of modern society, it is becoming increasingly obvious that the slowdowns and shutdowns may inadvertently enable us to shape a new conception of prosperity and good livelihood. We may even come out of this unfortunate episode with renewed fortitude and commitment to work toward the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. And since we are all living through this unique moment, observing the responses by government, businesses, and ordinary people, it marks an opportune time to explore if these changes can provide leverage points for opening pathways to a sustainability transition.
Building from the points discussed in a recent Future Earth blog post (here), we would like to jumpstart a conversation on how COVID-19 could catalyze social changes that enable us to overcome customary routines and business-as-usual patterns of activity. We will see many adjustments-some good and some less so-being implemented in coming weeks and months. What are the opportunities for "locking in" those changes that can contribute to a more prosperous and equitable future.
Points of departure for this conversation might include:
-Working hours, work itself, and universal basic income
-Downshifting mobility and virtual communication
-Shifts in production technologies and routines (Industry 4.0)
-Restructured supply chains and economic localization
-A return to the fundamentals of home economics and notions of sufficiency
Please let us know if you are interested in joining the conversation by RSVPing here: https://forms.gle/W6nhV576KafenJdZ6
Hope to see you online!