The State of the Planet Conference, held every two years by the Earth Institute at Columbia University, assesses the state of global natural and human systems in order to identify those factors central to achieving sustainable development. The conference brings together insights from the world's most influential and innovative thinkers in a wide range of academic fields, including the earth sciences, engineering sciences, biological sciences, health sciences, and social sciences, with those from opinion leaders in the media, government and the policy community.The conference closes tomorrow with a debate sponsored by the 'free market' advocacy magazine The Economist. State of the Planet 2008 is a carbon neutral event.
Participants explore and debate in depth, on a global scale, the current condition of natural and human systems from the perspectives of both the natural and social sciences. In fostering constructive relations between these scientific communities and government leaders, international organizations, individuals and others, the conference promotes policy designed to reach the goals of sustainable development.
To secure our future as a species we must first understand what impact we have on the planet we inhabit. Getting to that understanding - and framing viable solutions for our future - is what this conference is all about.
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