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Robert Zicklin Center for Corporate Integrity at Baruch College
151 E. 25th Street (b/w Lexington and 3rd), Room 750, New York, NY 10010
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Learning to Play in the Sandbox: Cooperating for Climate Resilience

A key conclusion from the book Adapting to Change: The Business of Climate Resilience, released during Climate Week 2016, is that, to tackle complex challenges such as climate change, we have to learn to cooperate, collaborate and generally work better together. No one sector can combat the threat to our environment. Success requires the partnership of an untold number of experts from virtually every discipline.

This need to better work together is echoed increasingly throughout the sustainability community. For instance, at the EPA’s March Climate Leadership Conference, a discussion on how communities can create a resilience strategy quickly turned to the need for cities to more effectively cooperate with the private sector. Despite the wondrous technologies we humans continue to devise, it seems we still haven’t learned some basic lessons—like how to play in the sandbox.

The lack of effective collaboration is exacerbated by the fact that the players in the sandbox are changing. Former climate supporters, such as the federal government, are stepping back. In their place, are environmental advocates including Big Business and the Armed Forces. While these allies understand the risks of climate deterioration, we don’t necessarily understand how best to work with one another toward a common goal.

This panel discussion will bring together representatives from various sectors - the different kids in the sandbox - in order to elicit a better understanding of their unique needs, the incentives and rewards that motivate them and the ways they operate and think. The aim is to formulate some principles from which we may be better able to collaborate for climate resilience.


Moderated by ANN GOODMAN, Ph.D, CUNY Advanced Science Research Center; Author, Adapting to Change: The Business of Climate Resilience (Business Expert Press, 2016)

EDAN DIONNE, Director, Corporate Environmental Affairs, IBM

KIMBERLEY HILL KNOTT, President/CEO Future Insight Consulting, LLC

NILDA MESA, Director, Urban Sustainability and Equity Planning, Urban Design Lab, Columbia University

COL. MARK READ, Head, Department of Geography & Environment Engineering, United States Military Academy