Less is More
24 Nov 2008
This years’s Schumacher Lectures celebrated new ideas from passionate advocates of change to people reshaping society from the ground up.
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The Schumacher Lectures
The Schumacher Lectures take place every year in Bristol and attract many inspirational speakers from all over the world. This year marked the 30th Anniversary of Ernst Friedrich “Fritz” Schumacher’s death, so the organisers ran the event a little differently. It was not so much a line-up of lecturers, as a celebrated sharing of new ideas from passionate advocates of change, out-spoken controversialists and people reshaping society from the ground up.
The theme, Less is More: Can We Really Live Better by Consuming Less? was at the heart of the day’s debates. Issues covered talking points, such as climate change, worsening injustice, peak oil, the ‘credit crunch’ and food security.
English environmentalist and writer Jonathon Porritt chaired the event, at a packed Council House on a sunny weekend in mid-Autumn. This was the day that the audience woke up to the unprecedented news that the British Government were going to partially nationalise some of the banks and put large amounts of money back into the system to shore up recent losses.
“I believe that this could be the end of this system,” announced Jonathon Porritt and he referred to the recent economic events as “astonishing”. At this, the entire audience were rapt, for reasons of personal interest, concern for the next generation and a desire to know what lies ahead.
The advocates for change included author and educator Bill McKibben, who opened the proceedings with a lecture entitled, 350 Parts per Million of Carbon Dioxide and the Quest for Human Satisfaction.
Positive News covered many of the day’s seminars, including the annual Schumacher Award ceremony. This special prize honours individuals and grassroots organisations in the UK, whose work is making a significant contribution to human scale sustainable development in the Schumacher tradition. This year’s award went to Rob Hopkins, the inspiration behind the Transition Towns Movement.
Contact: The Schumacher Society Office, The CREATE Environment Centre, Smeaton Road, Bristol, BS1 6XN
Tel: +44 (0)117 903 1081
Above: the Schumacher Lectures
were held at the Bristol Council House
Photo: courtesy of Marc Leverton
The Schumacher Lectures were jointly organised
by the Schumacher Society and Forum for the Future
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