This five-part course offers both a big picture orientation to the many-layered challenges facing humanity at this planetary moment, and a systematic roadmap for gaining many of the skills, inner and outer, for navigation with resilience.
Anna O’Malley, MD, is Bravewell Fellow graduated from the University of Arizona’s Program in Integrative Medicine. Anna is inspired by working to transform medicine. Her residency training at University of California, San Francisco at San Francisco General Hospital and her work within the California prison system deepened her understanding of the social determinants of health, the beauty of the path of service, and the critical importance of inclusivity. Her practice of Integrative Family and Community Medicine in West Marin allows her the profound privilege of embodying the healer archetype in the village, exploring innovative models applying Community as Medicine, and honoring the mysterious and beautiful cycles of Life.
James Stark, MA, FES, is the co-director of the Regenerative Design Institute at Commonweal (RDI). He considers the programs and the garden at RDI to be a nursery for growing visions of the new era, and providing skills and tools to bring those visions to life. He co-founded and currently co-directs the Ecology of Leadership program, preparing community leaders for the “Great Turning” of our era and the Art of Vitality program, creating pathways to vitality. He also co-founded and instructed the Ecology of Awakening program.
The Human Predicament in 2020: Interacting Global Crises and the New Normal
October 23, 2020
This year we have all witnessed how major global stressors—from climate change and income inequality to pandemics and autocracy—can impact each other and cause massive, cascading changes in our world. At the same time, other factors including pollution, artificial intelligence, population growth, and social media seem unstoppable forces that escalate other risks.
Many fear that a broader systems collapse could be a plausible scenario. Given what we know, how do we respond? In this roundtable conversation, join Christina Conklin as she brings together scholars, designers, and activists to share their perspectives on the polycrisis. Audience questions and comments will enrich the dialogue, and the moderator will lead participants in a creative exercise to generate new language and insights.
Christina Conklin is an artist, writer, and researcher whose book, The Atlas of Disappearing Places: Our Coasts and Oceans in the Climate Crisis, will be published by The New Press in April 2021. Her sculptures, interactive installations, and participatory walks examine culture’s role within natural systems at this time of rapid change and ask people to engage with both personal and societal response-ability.
Joan Diamond is a leading scholar in the field of global systems change. She is executive director of the Millenium Alliance for Humanities and the Biosphere at Stanford. Steve Heilig is a TNS Host, and an expert on the intersection of public health and the environment. Samantha Suppiah is a urban sustainability strategist and engineer and an independent consultant now based in Southeast Asia after 12 years in Northern Europe. Ed Saltzberg is the founder and director of the Security and Sustainability Forum, a Washington, DC-based network of professionals from government, industry, and academia. Jason Groves is an assistant professor of Germanics at the University of Washington whose writings, translations, and conceptual art investigate the entanglement of humanity and geology.
RajPatel is an award-winning author, filmmaker, and academic with voluminous experience and expertise in understanding and seeking change in food systems. See his recent take on how food systems will impact and be impacted by the intersecting Global Polycrisis here, Fragility in the Food System.
“2020-2030–Navigating a Path Between Fantasy and Doom–A Top Down Overview”: a webinar with Nate Hagens
July 30th, 2020
Resources for Resilience invites you to a webinar with Nate Hagens, a widely respected public intellectual on the big picture issues facing human society.
Nate’s most recent work has focused on how we navigate through this period of COVID, and in the face of an increasing likelihood of serious economic hardship. He has been meeting with civil society and influential members of the US congress about how to strengthen society, and how to strategically approach top down and bottom up solutions, and where the two can meet.
OMEGA webinar with grassroots community organizers
While the Global Challenges faced by OMEGA are wide-ranging, the impacts are concretely felt by communities on the front lines. Three grassroots organizers working on issues including racism, climate change, and extractive industries share their views on the Global Challenges, the impacts felt by communities, and the intersectional work needed to accelerate our transition to a just, sustainable and resilient world.
Farming and Eating during Times of COVID19
Miguel Altieri in conversation with Michael Lerner
Miguel Altieri is a world leader in transforming our relationship with agriculture and food. He taught agroecology and urban agriculture at UC Berkeley for 37 years and serves as guest professor in numerous Universities in Latin America, Spain and Italy. He has conducted most of his research in California and Latin America, working closely with farmers on implementing principles of agroecology to design productive, biodiverse and resilient farming systems.
COVID-19: Learning from the crisis and reimaging the future for environment and climate challenges.
Sunita Narain in conversation with Michael Lerner
May 27, 2020
The Omega Collaborative hosted a webinar with Sunita Narain, a leading Indian activist and environmentalist on May 27th. Narain is a world-renowned Indian writer and environmentalist, known for using knowledge and compassion for social transformation. She is recognized as one of the leading voices for fundamental science-based humanitarian change, valued for her honesty and ability to work with tribal communities in India, senior government officials, and international leaders. Her influence is welcomed throughout the global south, across Asia and the western world. In 2016, Time magazine included her in their list of the most influential people in the world.
Are We in the Omega Phase of the Adaptive Cycle?
with Thomas Homer Dixon
May 13, 2020
The Omega Collaborative hosted a webinar with Thomas Homer Dixon on May 13, 2020. Homer Dixon is a Canadian professor of political science and one of the world’s widest read public intellectuals in the field of the global security. The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity, and the Renewal of Civilization, has influenced millions, appealing to senior thought leaders and millennials alike. Recently he launched the Cascade Institute “..a centre addressing the full range of humanity’s converging environmental, economic, political and technological crises.”
His talk addresses the Upside of Down, his forthcoming book Commanding Hope, and the Cascade Institute.
Anticipatory Preparedness and Resilience in a Time of Escalating Risk with David Korowicz
April 9, 2020
Dr. David Korowicz is a physicist and human systems ecologist. He has over a decade of experience working on large-scale and catastrophic risk. This has included work on the socio-economic impacts of pandemics and constraints on oil production, financial system failure, and integrated analysis of civilizational risk. Until recently he worked with the Geneva Global Initiative; he is now working on preparedness and resilience planning arising from the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
COVID-19 Crisis Webinar with Nafeez Ahmed
April 1, 2020
Dr. Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed addressed a framework by which we can understand and respond to the COVID-19 crisis while anticipating its consequences and preparing for what’s next. OMEGA Advisory Board members engaged Dr. Ahmed in conversation.
Dr. Ahmed is an award-winning investigative journalist, systems theorist and change strategist. He is ‘system shift’ columnist at VICE where he reports on global system transformation and founding editor of the crowdfunded platform INSURGE-intelligence. He previously reported on the interconnections of global environment, energy and economic crises for The Guardian via his ‘Earth insight’ Guardian blog. His reporting can also be found in The Times, The Independent, The Atlantic, Quartz, Foreign Policy, New York Observer, Prospect, Le Monde diplomatique, and elsewhere. He is the author of A User’s Guide to the Crisis of Civilization (Pluto, 2010), the first peer-reviewed social science study integrating a systems approach to climate, energy, food, economy, war, terror and state-militarisation, and Failing States, Collapsing Systems: BioPhysical Triggers of Political Violence (Springer-Nature, 2017). Nafeez is a research fellow at the Schumacher Institute for Sustainable Systems and a fellow at the Royal Society of Arts. The Evening Standard has twice include him on its list of the top 1,000 most influential Londoners.
Richard Heinberg—Real Community Resilience 2020-2040
March 16, 2020
Richard Heinberg of the Post Carbon Institute is one of the visionary thinkers of our time on community resilience. The New School host Michael Lerner chatted with Richard in a searching exploration of building community resilience for the coming turbulent decades.
The Resilience Gathering
June 6, 2019
The New School at Commonweal hosted The Resilience Gathering, including keynote speakers Nate Hagens and Joanna Macy, leading authorities in the field. They engaged several dozen participants on these questions:
Can we avoid civilizational collapse?
Can we “bend” and not “break”?
We face a “perfect storm” of interacting global stressors. Is resilience a possible response?
What does real resilience look like?
Nate Hagens gives the keynote speech at The Resilience Gathering
Joanna Macy presents at The Resilience Gathering
We continue to host and participate in resilience gatherings with our partners.
Regrettably, our planned November 1, 2019, gathering was cancelled due to wildfires and power outages in Northern California. The irony is not lost on us.
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