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A new Earth conversation

SPRING 2019 NEWSLETTER

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Funding from the Reynolds Foundation

We are very happy to announce that the NEC (A new Earth conversation) has received a grant of $300,000 over the next three years from the Christopher Reynolds Foundation. This builds on an earlier grant of $72,000 in 2018.

This generous funding allows us to continue this critically important work in a number of ways – through NEC public programs, innovations in curriculum (the Collaboratives), affiliated courses and FYIs, the Listening in Nature initiative, and through the Council on the Uncertain Human Future as the foundation of NEC. Learn more on our website.

The Council on the Uncertain Human Future (CUHF) has also received a grant of $300,000 to support its work regionally, nationally and internationally. 

So many people made this possible, through numerous Councils and Climate Change Teach-ins that helped us envision what was possible and necessary. The NEC Core advisory team has been a bulwark of support. So many of you are already involved – please reach out to us if you’d like to talk about how you can contribute.

Tim DeChristopher is first NEC Visiting Fellow

We are very grateful that Tim DeChristopher is joining us this semester as the first NEC Visiting Fellow. Tim is a leading climate activist and founder of the Climate Disobedience Center. He came to prominence in 2008 when he, as Bidder 70, bid on BLM lands in redrock country in Utah which were being sold for fracking. He served 21 months in federal prison for this action.

He has initiated two major public programs this semester (conversations with Terry Tempest Williams and Susi Moser), is sharing his Praxis work with the Council Collaborative, is available to visit other classes, and will meet with the Core Advisory team and others.

NEC PUBLIC PROGRAMS, Spring 2019

We hope you will join us for these upcoming conversations and events:
 

Cohabiting with the devil  
Extractive industries, climate change and the struggle to live well 
A conversation with Tony Bebbington, Denise Humphreys Bebbington, John Rogan and Laura Sauls

How do people cohabit with extractive industries, especially in Latin America and Indonesia? We will discuss the pressures that resource extraction is placing on forests and community rights as well as some of the ways in which community and elite groups have mobilized around these issues. This conversation with Tony, Denise, John and Laura will focus on their recent research and how their findings are pushing our understanding of the relationships between resource extraction, infrastructure, forest loss and the politics of rights-based socio-environmental change.

Tony Bebbington is the Higgins Professor of Environment and Society in the GSG, Denise Humphreys Bebbington is Associate Research Professor in IDCE, John Rogan is Professor of Geography, and Laura Sauls is a graduate student in Geography.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 20 at 4:30 pm | Fireside Lounge, Dana Commons

On Infertile Ground
Population Control and Women’s Rights in the Era of Climate Change

In On Infertile Ground, Jade Sasser, Assistant Professor, University of California, Riverside, explores how a small network of international development actors, including private donors, NGO program managers, scientists, and youth advocates, is bringing population back to the center of public environmental debate.

TUESDAY, MARCH 26 at 4:30 pm | Higgins Lounge

Tim DeChristopher and Terry Tempest Williams in conversation
How we live now with what we know

Climate activist and NEC Visiting Fellow Tim DeChristopher and renowned writer, conservationist and activist Terry Tempest Williams will ask how we live with what we know about the climate crisis, and open the conversation to the audience as well.

THURSDAY, MARCH 28 at 7 pm | Tilton Hall

Tim DeChristopher and Susi Moser in conversation
How we live now with what we know

Climate activist and NEC Visiting Fellow Tim DeChristopher and
leading climate communications expert Susi Moser (Clark Geography PhD 1997) will continue exploring the question of how we live with what we know about the climate crisis, and open the conversation to the audience as well.

THURSDAY APRIL 4 at 7 pm | Higgins Lounge

Listening in Nature Launch

A distinctive aspect of the NEC, the Listening in Nature program offers a range of experiential opportunities and resources to further our awareness of and connection to the living planet of which we are part. On this launch day, the community is invited to seek out one or more of a wide range of activities taking place through the day and evening around the campus. A full schedule will be available before the event.

WEDNESDAY APRIL 17, all day | all around campus

Evening of Council

The students of the NEC Council Collaborative will lead an Evening of Council around questions of climate change and our responses to it. Participation is by invitation, but please reach out to Ellen Foley if you are interested in joining.

Date TBD | Dana Commons (Higgins Lounge, Atrium, and more)

A MONTH OF COUNCILS

The work of the Council on the Uncertain Human Future has continued to deepen and expand at Clark this year, and the month of January was exemplary.
  • A New Faculty Council (Clark faculty and staff) convened on January 11-12; participants include Morgan Ruelle (IDCE), Youjin Chung (Geography), Jessa Loomis (Geography), Denise Humphreys Bebbington (IDCE), Amy Wynne (Studio Art), Amy Daly Gardner (International Programs), Walter Wright (NEC/CUHF), Elizabeth Monson (Natural Dharma Fellowship) and Sarah Buie (NEC/CUHF).

  • A CUHF with the students of the Council Collaborative met Sunday January 13, as a basis for the work of the semester

  • The Partnership Council (faculty and staff from Clark, Worcester State, Wellesley, UMass Amherst, Central MA 350.org, and others) held its second convening on January 25-26; Clark faculty participants are Tim Downs (IDCE), Sarah Buie and Walter Wright.

  • The students of Place-Based Ecologies Collaborative with Morgan Ruelle met in Council on Sunday January 27, as a foundation for the work of the semester

If you are interested in joining an upcoming Council on the Uncertain Human Future, please be in touch with Sarah Buie.

Current NEC Collaboratives Spring 2019

This semester, we are offering two NEC Collaboratives; both launched with an experience of the Council on the Uncertain Human Future

Morgan Ruelle (IDCE) is offering Place-Based Ecological Knowledge as a Collaborative: The complex challenges of the 21st century require transdisciplinary collaborations that integrate different ways of knowing our environment. The course explores the diverse knowledge systems of Indigenous peoples and others who live in close relation to land, and how place-based and scientific ecological knowledge can work together to address ecological challenges, including wildlife management, food production, and adaptation to climate change. 

Sarah Buie and Walter Wright are offering a Council Collaborative, based on deepening conversation and community around the climate crisis, including the skills needed, and how more authentic conversations may serve in these uncertain times.

You can learn more about what distinguishes Collaboratives here

Are you interested in finding out more about designing a Collaborative course?  Would you like one of your fall courses to be affiliated with A new Earth conversation?  Join us at 3pm on Tuesday February 26 in the Higgins Lounge to learn more.

NEC LEADERSHIP

Lead Convener  
Ellen Foley IDCE

Core Advisory Group 

Chuck Agosta Physics
Jessica Bane-Robert LEEP Center
Sarah Buie V&PA, Founding Convener CUHF
Ed Carr IDCE
Steve Levin English
Jenny Isler Sustainable Clark
Deb Robertson Biology
Rinku Roy Chowdhury Geography

 
Core Advisory Group (cont.)
Morgan Ruelle IDCE

Rachael Shea Library
Walter Wright Philosophy

NEC project assistants
Molly Gurney ’18, IDCE grad
Dimitri Koufis ‘22
 

Design consultant
Rose Gallogly ‘16

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