It’s been awhile! In these past few months we’ve been devoting our time to a new initiative concerning environment and sustainability: the Global Observatory.
The Global Observatory is an initiative that seeks to provide insights around COP15 to bring the public in, to involve them in guiding their governments towards agreement on a roadmap that will prevent dangerous climate change. We want everyone on this planet to witness the progress of the negotiations and to demand a fair and binding climate agreement for the following years. We need you to become a Global Observer for the Earth.
A couple of weeks ago we had the opportunity of attending the Climate Week NY°C, which allowed us to interview world leaders, campaign activists and climate change benchmarks. We invite you to follow all of our news, the progress of COP15 negotiations and the implications communicated by our team of experts and ambassadors in our blog: www.global-observatory.org
Watch our official video presentation here:
You can also join us in Facebook at www.facebook.com/GlobalObservatory or follow us at www.twitter.com/WeAreGo
The planet, the economy, technology & energy, learning & education
and governance & security are the five main focus dimensions that occupy the participants of the Tällberg Forum, which takes place every year since 2005.
This year Ernesto van Peborgh, founder of El Viaje de Odiseo consultancy firm, had the chance to attend the event and participate of the debates.
So what is the forum about anyway?
“The Tällberg Forum is an arena for reflection, conversations and the search for creative solutions, integrating both nature and the arts, where people feel free to step outside of their professional identity, to share doubts and new ideas, and search for ways forward outside of established frameworks. It acts to stimulate the conversation on, and design solutions to the problems of our times in order to foster new thinking and solutions”.
The Forum included a variety of programs and workshops that happened during five days (June 24 – 28) and gave the participants the opportunity to meet colleagues and like-minded people to brainstorm and conversate on ideas, initiatives, actions that can better the world.
We’re very excited to have been part of this year edition, and hopefully we’ll be able to bring new ideas to this table.
To get started, we recommend these videos of some of the most amazing talks:
Gro Harlem Brundtland
Session IV: The task ahead. Keynote address by the former Prime Minister of Norway.
Session V: Copenhagen – five months to go.
The Fossil-Fuel End-game
Session III – The diverging interests.
Final reflections by the CEO and Founding Partner of Ecos Corporation, Australia.
Powered by Google Maps and using an application that runs on the successful social network Orkut, Globo Amazônia –an initiative by Fantástico.com and Globo.com – has become an online community where citizens have so far filed more than 45 million reports denouncing the burning and deforesting of the Amazonas.
So how does it work exactly? Globo Amazônia is a website that raises awareness on environmental issues related to the Amazonian forests and their flora and fauna. But it also works as a hub where people are encouraged to denounce every time they witness the destruction of this natural wonder.
Choosing to participate will lead you to the installation of an Orkut application, through which you can report illegal activity going on in the Amazon. And you can also stay connected through blogs and Twitter updates.
As one of many, this initiative acknowledges the merging of three powerful currents: sustainable development, the web 2.0, and citizen awareness, and it’s an opportunity to look ahead with bright green eyes.
We were still trying to understand what Web 2.0 was all about and to measure the repercursions of this phenomenon that transformed the way we communicate, work, create and live, when someone started talking about Web 3.0.
After reading many definitions, clues, suggestions and discussions on this new stage of the revolution, one that I found extraordinary simple and effective was the following: What is Web 3.0? It’s Web 2.0 with a brain.
Of course, there’s still much to learn and think about it, and to get the conversation started we invite you to watch the following introductory videos:
For the next 45 months and until December 21, 2012, we will hear more and more speculations with regard to what will really happen on that day.
The Mayas declared it the end of their calendar, as if the world would end on that date, a theory that fits “philosopher and scientist” Terrance McKenna’s reading of the I Ching, the ancient Chinese book of mutations.
The truth is that these prophecies foretell the end of an era and radical transformations for humankind, and it is likely that their proximity will lead us to discuss, and finally accept, the need for profound change.
The need for change
We are undergoing a social and environmental crisis that endangers the future of our children and our own preservation.
Scientific projections are alarming, and certain circles have begun discussing the “survivality” of our species, a theory which makes more sense if we consider that the human population will be doubled in the coming decades.
The situation is so complex, it begins to be clear that it will be impossible to solve through isolated, partial solutions: a comprehensive solution is needed, a change of paradigm that will summon the coordinated commitment of all the inhabitants of the planet towards plenary and unified action.
Faced with the reality of these facts, all of us who dedicate time and effort to seek a way out share the same hopeful vision, filled with valid and feasible solutions, all of them relatively easy to implement.
We all seem to conclude and agree that the first critical need is to achieve a collective awareness that will enable us to finally head towards a sustainable development, capable of meeting the needs of the present without compromising the future generations. Understanding is 50% of the solution, affirms Bill Drayton, the founder of Ashoka.
And, in search of this agreement and the commitment necessary to channel our efforts towards a comprehensive action, we perceive a tendency capable of changing the course of history, the transforming dynamics that would generate the collective awareness which will allow humankind to perceive reality from a more committed perspective. The possibility arises from the dramatic transformation experienced by the Internet. In a few years, the Web changed from a unidirectional publication space, conceived to emulate TV and radio, into a plural space of conversation, community and collective construction, which enables free interconnectivity and the union of everyone through active, dynamic and actual links, capable of definitively modifying the current structure of society.
The social media, as they begin to be called, do not keep secrets, because through them everybody has access to information; horizontality prevails, since there are no hierarchies, and participation and collaboration determine a new behavior for the members of the network. In this dynamics there arise the social networks that are naturally disruptive, not just modifying the way in which we relate, but also interconnecting us by expanding the physical space we inhabit and enabling each individual to interact in all corners of the planet and to connect with those people with whom he or she shares common interests. Social networks form an interconnected membrane which transcends technological innovation to become a philosophic re-evolution.
The Hopi and the Noosphere
And here I return to 2012, this post’s opening subject, to quote another ancient prophecy: the curious vision of the Hopi, a Native American tribe, who for centuries have been announcing the beginning of a new era for this date, and describe this day as that of the “great purification”. Curiously, they also predict that at that moment a series of “cobwebs will cross the skies”. The controversial Daniel Pinchbeck, who analyzes the prophecy in detail, describes it as the global awakening of a planetary psychic connection, a concept similar to the Noosphere theory which Pierre Teilhard de Chardin imagined at the turn of the twentieth century.
Teilhard de Chardin’s idea assumes that if the cooperation of millions of cells in our brain generates our consciousness, the idea of a cooperation of humankind makes the emergence of a collective awareness more plausible. Teilhard de Chardin defines this space, the Noosphere, as “a universal thought membrane, a closed system in which each individual sees, feels, desires and suffers the same which the others are experiencing at that moment. The plurality of individual reflections grouping together and reassuring each other in a single act of unanimous reflection”.
Neither the Hopi nor Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955) could have envisioned the Web as it exists now.
The 2.0 concept was only coined in 2005 by Tim O’Reilly, and has since then strengthened its possibilities. From them arose hundreds of new disruptions, most of them with a single essence and philosophy: those of connecting people in an honest and transparent manner around knowledge.
It’s less than four years until 2012, the same time that has elapsed since the Web started evolving as a social space. In those few years there appeared YouTube, Facebook, Myspace, Twitter and Flickr, among other sites which enabled people to join and create networks that expand, encompassing new fields of social links, connecting everybody to everything, across age, social, religious, ethnical and economic boundaries, and reaching into the remotest confines of humankind. The added user populations of Facebook and MySpace alone amount to that of the world’s third largest country. Both networks continue their dizzying growth, adding between themselves almost a million people each day.
A collective consciousness?
It seems as if the membrane described by Teilhard de Chardin and the “cobwebs” foretold by the Hopi have begun to weave themselves at an unprecedented speed, which makes it possible for the world to be conceived, for the first time, in a new social dimension, a “membrane” in which we are all interconnected, opening new participation and debate spaces and moving into action.
If our failure to approach sustainable development lies in disregarding the consequences of our actions for our fellow human beings and for the planet, is it correct to assume that, if the universe takes on a face and a heart and becomes personified, our attitude will radically change, enabling the elemental attraction we human beings carry inside us to blossom and unite us as a whole? Could it be possible that, even as our brain cells once joined to wake our consciousness, the interactive union of people inside this “membrane” may enable us to understand information and a reality which we cannot today know or perceive – that we may through this act give birth to a new consciousness, the collective consciousness?
Could this be the change announced by all these theories that converge in 2012? A new future for all, the consequence of the evolution of humankind in association with everything else.