Rutgers Global hosted a panel discussion on the topic of international research in the areas of sustainability and climate change on December 20 at the Rutgers Club. The event, open to faculty, staff, and students, included some of Rutgers University’s renowned faculty who presented on their research and engaged with the audience during a Q&A session.
After welcoming remarks by Eric Garfunkel, Vice President for Global Affairs at Rutgers, and Anu Gupta, Assistant Dean for International Academic Support at Rutgers Global, the first panel commenced on the topic of science and technology. Paul Falkowski, Board of Governors Professor of Marine, Earth and Planetary Sciences gave a presentation on “Dissecting the Concept of Sustainability and Human Nature.” Josh Kohut, Professor, Center for Ocean Observing Leadership, Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences, and Joseph Brodie, Director of Atmospheric Research, Center for Ocean Observing Leadership, Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences discussed “Frontier Technologies Advancing the Stewardship of our Ocean Planet.” And Robert Kopp, Director, Rutgers Institute of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences Professor, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences presented on “Managing Climate Risk.” After the short presentations Marjorie Kaplan, Associate Director of the Rutgers Climate Institute, moderated a panel discussion.
A second panel discussion on the topic of society and governance followed. Cymie Payne, Associate Professor at the Department of Human Ecology, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, and the School of Law–Camden discussed “Climate Change Governance.” Robin Leichenko, Professor and Chair, Department of Geography Co-Director, Rutgers Climate Institute presented on the topic of “Bringing Equity into Climate Change Adaptation.” And Kevin Lyons, Associate Professor of Professional Practice, Supply Chain Management Department, Rutgers Business School talked about “Green Purchasing & Supply Chain Management.” Dr. Kaplan moderated a second discussion following this panel, and then engaged the audience in conversation with all six panelists.
The panelists discussed a range of thought-provoking topics, including the increasing global challenge of providing food, water, energy, and economic security for a rapidly growing population living on a rapidly changing planet, and how equity and sustainability are deeply intertwined. There were also conversations about the crucial need to design for the environment, and the importance of working with other countries to support and implement a new ocean treaty. The audience was energized by the discussions and engaged with the panelists with many questions at the end of the presentation.
Anu Gupta, who worked with Dr. Garfunkel to organize the panel, remarked, “We were thrilled to have the opportunity to highlight the global research of our esteemed faculty, and were heartened to welcome the large and diverse audience of engaged faculty, staff, and students. Our goal is to host more of these panel discussions on global issues for the Rutgers community in the coming year.”
Robert Goodman, Executive Dean of the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, was in the audience and shared that he found the symposium “absolutely outstanding.”
This panel discussion also served as the year-end meeting of the Rutgers International Advisory Committee. Here are some photos from the event.