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The Prince of Wales supports the vision of Future Earth

The 2014 Norwich Conference on Earth System Governance: Access and Allocation in the Anthropocene will begin at the University of East Anglia (UEA), UK, later this evening.

The conference will open with a public debate on ‘Sharing Our Earth,’ including a video address from the Prince of Wales, patron of UEA’s School of Environmental Sciences. The full programme starts tomorrow.

The conference, which is being hosted for the first time in the UK, brings together many of the world’s foremost researchers to work toward creating a sustainable planet. It is the annual gathering of the Earth System Governance Project, which was launched in 2008.

Prince Charles will tell the conference that humans cannot continue with business as usual if we are to leave a vibrant, thriving planet for future generations. Our only hope, the prince says, is to pass on the wisdom of sustainability, incorporating justice and compassion for all. The prince also expresses his support for the vision of Future Earth.

Professor Corinne Le Quéré, director of the Tyndall Centre at UEA and a member of the Future Earth Science Committee, welcomed the prince’s comments, saying “We are delighted that Prince Charles supports the new Future Earth research programme for global sustainability.”

The 2014 Conference on Earth System Governance is entitled 'Access and Allocation in the Anthropocene', and will focus on ethical issues around food and water security, access to resources and other human rights concerns.

The conference, which runs from July 1-3, will include discussions on:

  • Governing Earth’s resources: what is needed to strengthen cooperation around sharing water, forests and other resources?
  • Green growth and new development pathways: can we connect innovation with practice and remove barriers? 
  • Sustainability and prosperity: how can this be achieved for everyone?

The full conference programme can be found online. Bob Watson, Chair of the Future Earth interim Engagement Committee, will deliver a keynote speech during the opening plenary session, which will be followed by a semi-plenary session on Innovative Learning for Global Governance. Moderated by Frans Berkhout, interim Director of Future Earth, this session will look at the challenges for taking forward exciting forms of learning, communication and engagement involving researchers and various partners in action and governance; where disciplinary boundaries are stretched, various forms of measurement are opened up, and innovative methodologies are tested.

Future Earth seeks to reformulate learning and training for a research process that is open ended, exploratory, and investigative, where research pathways are forged in partnership with business, government and civil society. This semi-plenary session will provide a platform for the audience to suggest directions and methods to ensure the strong involvement of Earth System Governance research in Future Earth.

The 2014 Norwich Conference on Earth System Governance is sponsored by UEA’s School of International Development, the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research and the UEA’s faculties of Science and Social Sciences.