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Sustainable Development for the 21st Century: The Role of the Modern University

August 17th, 2012 @ 3:20 pm by Camille Kirk

The guest post below comes to us from Paul Dorn, Director of Marketing & Communications for the College of Engineering, UC Davis. Paul is also an extraordinary bike commuter, and has written The Bike to Work Guide. Below, he shares information about an upcoming conference that will directly demonstrate the link between higher education and sustainability.


UC Davis Solar Panel Installation

Solar panel installation in the parking lot of the Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science at UC Davis in 2011

The College of Engineering at UC Davis is sponsoring a free one-day conference, Sustainable Development for the 21st Century: The Role of the Modern University, on Wednesday, September 26, 2012 at the UC Davis Conference Center, located near Mondavi Center on the university campus. The event is free, but requires online registration.

According to Diran Apelian, an organizer of the Sustainable Development conference and a visiting faculty member in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at UC Davis, the event will offer a great opportunity to address sustainability across a widevariety of interconnected disciplines. “Technology, by itself, cannot do the job,” says Apelian. “Sustainable development requires a holistic, inclusive blend of education, technology/innovation, and public policy/political cooperation.”

Too often, according to Apelian, many sustainability challenges are regarded as distinct, separate topic, when in fact they are all components of a needed systemic approach to sustainable development. A healthy population requires affordable nutrition; optimal food production relies upon availability of water and energy; climate change and energy use are affected by population growth and availability of renewable sources of energy; and housing and shelter must address local and community needs.

“UC Davis is well positioned for a leadership role in providing implementable solutions for a sustainable future,” says Apelian. “With a wealth of achievement in agricultural and biological sciences, UC Davis will be at the heart of assuring the future of food, water, and healthcare. UC Davis offers — across the entire United States — the perfect setting for productive information exchange and advancement, toward a better and more sustainable future.”


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One Response to “Sustainable Development for the 21st Century: The Role of the Modern University”

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