Black Swans & the U.S. Future: Building Sustainable & Resilient Societies

SEPTEMBER 14, 2012

Dr. David Orr

Professor of Environmental Studies and Politics
Oberlin College

What is the talk about?

‘Black Swans’ are infrequent and unpredictable events that can drive change in both human and natural systems.  What qualities make societies resilient and sustainable in the face of environmental Black Swans? How can we prepare for, absorb, and recover from the unpredictable disruptions from climate-related ecological change? In this talk, Dr. Orr discusses several promising strategies, including building upon what we already know about sustainable design, construction, and technology to create resilient societies and support systems. Co-sponsored by UT’s President’s Office of Sustainability, ESI, School of Architecture and Center for Teaching and Learning.

About our presenter

Dr. David Orr

Dr. David Orr

Dr. David Orr is one of our generation’s leading environmental philosophers and educators. He is the recipient of five honorary degrees and other awards including The Millennium Leadership Award from Global Green, the Bioneers Award, the National Wildlife Federation Leadership Award, a Lyndhurst Prize acknowledging “persons of exceptional moral character, vision, and energy”. Dr. Orr has lectured at hundreds of colleges and universities throughout the U.S. and Europe, and has served as a Trustee for many organizations including the Rocky Mountain Institute and the Aldo Leopold Foundation. He has been a Trustee and/or advisor to ten foundations. His career as a scholar, teacher, writer, speaker, and entrepreneur spans fields as diverse as environment and politics, environmental education, campus greening, green building, ecological design, and climate change. He is the author of six books, including his best-selling 2005 title “Ecological Literacy: Educating Our Children for a Sustainable World”