Public Online Panel Discussion on Sustainability

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English-language panel discussion series "Berlin Talks" presented by the international short-term study programs FU-BEST and FUBiS of Freie Universität Berlin, broadcast live on February 18, 2021, at 7 p.m. (Central European time)

No 026/2021 from Feb 15, 2021

The international programs FU-BEST (European Studies) and FUBiS (International Summer and Winter University) will present an online panel discussion entitled "Sustainability: From Buzzword to Guiding Principle" on Thursday, February 18. Four experts will discuss various aspects of this topic.

The notion or concept of "sustainability," applied primarily to ecological matters, is not new perhaps, but it has truly acquired widespread usage in recent decades, often well beyond ecological or environmental discourse in a narrower sense. Used in a literal sense, the word might refer to the ability to perpetuate an activity or the existence of something. But it can also refer to how Earth’s species, especially humans, can share the planet and its resources in a more balanced way. More concretely, it indicates the necessity of making use of natural, renewable resources only in such a way that people can continue to rely on their availability in the long term.

Has the proliferating use of the term sustainability become too inflated, turning the concept into a buzzword and hence diminishing its usefulness? How can this term be meaningfully defined and applied? How can it serve as a useful guiding principle? The next "Berlin Talks" panel discussion will address these and other questions from a variety of perspectives, ranging from a focus on local, institutional contexts (at a university), to economic pursuits, to political concerns and policy-making, as well as the role of activism on different levels - from local to European.

The event will be live-streamed in English and viewers are invited to participate virtually via the chat function.

Panel Members

  • Dr. Dirk Verheyen (moderator): Academic director, FU-BEST
  • Patrizia Heidegger : Director for Global Policies and Sustainability, European Environmental Bureau, Brussels
  • Andreas Wanke : Head of the Unit for Sustainability and Energy Management and coordinator of Sustainability and Energy Management at Freie Universität Berlin
  • Heike Mewes : FU-BEST instructor for the "Green Business" course
  • Dr. Andrzej Ancygier : FU-BEST and FUBiS instructor on environmental politics and policy

Panel Discussion Broadcast

  • Thursday, February 18, 2021, 7:00-8:30 p.m. CET
  • Live stream via Webex Events:­fu-berlin-en/onstage/g.php’MTID=e4912f983fb46ddc441f85d2c283da5bb (password: berlintalks);’ available later on the website as well as on the YouTube channels of FU-BEST and FUBiS , the organizers of the event.
  • The event will be held in English and will be broadcast live from the Academic Senate Hall of Freie Universität Berlin. Online viewers are invited to participate via the chat function with questions and comments.

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