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Université de la terre

Life
at a time
of great
transitions

November 25 & 26, 2022
at UNESCO • Paris

History

2008 • Reinventing progress

October 18 and 19, 2008

Scientific discoveries, medical and technological advances – progress is the vital backdrop to our daily lives. But we all know that we have reached the end of the industrial phase that was the locomotive of the Western world for 200 years, a period of runaway progress that preferred to ignore the collateral cost: the poisoning of the planet and the depletion of its resources. For some years now, we have been aware that we must look at progress in another way and that we must invent another model for society.

The idea of "sustainable development" is quite recent, but also quite novel: a sustainable economy can create new prosperity. The ecological revolution can create wealth.

If we wish to reinvent progress, we must explore its potential and redefine the ethics that should govern our scientific, political and social models. Until now, any attempt to slow the development of knowledge has come to grief on the shores of human conscience… and its irresistible instinct for transgression! Whatever their intentions, it looks as if the discoverers are engaged in a headlong flight from reality. Reinventing progress could, perhaps, begin with accepting the fact that any invention is an element of progress: a necessary first step to avoid sterile debates between partisans and opponents of progress. Does not reinventing progress mean putting mankind at its centre? No matter what form it takes, progress springs from the human spirit and embeds itself in the lives of millions of men and women. Since progress begets progress, reinventing it implies, first and foremost, redirecting it in order to imagine our future. The excesses of industrialisation demonstrate the need to preserve the resources of our planet. Any new "model" of progress must take into account the growing awareness of the world's peoples (at varying degrees), and the need to apply it to all sectors of society: science, of course, but also business, education, consumption, leisure and social relations.

What if reinventing progress consisted, first and foremost, of assuming responsibility for our lives and citizenship in a world whose injustices and complexity become apparent, a little more, every day?

Speakers

Jacques ATTALI
Writer, Chairman of PlaNet Finance

Etienne-Emile BAULIEU
Professor, doctor, endocrinologist, biochemist

Jean-Louis BORLOO
Minister of the Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Development and Planning

Mick BREMANS
Managing director, Ecover

Pierre-André de CHALENDAR
Managing Director of Saint-Gobain

Boris CYRULNIK
Writer, neuropsychiatrist

Jean-Luc DECORNOY
Chairman of the Board of KPMG

Marc DRILLECH
Managing Director of IONIS Education Group

Dominique ERAUD
doctor, acupuncturist

Geneviève FERONE
Director of Sustainable Development of the Veolia Environment Group

Luc FERRY
Philosopher

Orianne GARCIA
Founder of Caramail and co-founder of Terra Femina

Thierry GAUDIN
Mining engineer, President of Prospective 2100

Patrick HAAS
Chairman and CEO of BP France

Pascal HUSTING

Albert JACQUARD
Geneticist

Chantal JOUANNO
Chairwoman of ADEME

Axel KAHN
Geneticist, President of Université Paris Descartes

Etienne KLEIN
Physicist with the CEA, PhD in science

Elisabeth LAVILLE
Director and founder of Utopies, professor at HEC

Jean-Christophe LE DUIGOU

Dominique LECOURT
Philosopher, Director of the Centre Georges Canguilhem, Université Paris 7-Denis Diderot

Marc LUYCKX GHISI
PhD in philosophy, Vice President of the Conseil Consultatif International d’Auroville

Michel MAFFESOLI
Professor at the Sorbonne, Director of the centre d’études sur l’actuel et le quotidien (study of contemporary and everyday life)

Pierre MONGIN
Chairman-CEO of the RATP

Joaquin MUNOZ
Director of Max Havelaar

Maria NOWAK
Chairwoman of the Association pour le Droit à l'Initiative Economique (ADIE – micro-finance nonprofit)

Serge ORRU
Managing general WWF France

Yves PACCALET
Writer, philosopher and naturalist

Raphaël PALTI
Chairman of Altavia

Michèle PAPPALARDO
General commissioner for sustainable development

Bertrand PICCARD
Founder of Solar Impulse, psychiatrist

Frank PIEDELIEVRE
Chairman of the Board, Bureau Veritas

Pierre RABHI
Chairman of non-profit organisation Terre et Humanisme, writer, philosopher

Bernard RAMANANTSOA
Dean, HEC

Claude-Yves ROBIN

Joël de ROSNAY
Chairman of Biotics International

Maximilien ROUER
Chairman, partner and co-founder of BeCitizen, positive economy consultant

Samuel ROUVILLOIS
Priest, philosopher

Jean-Christophe RUFIN
French Ambassador to Senegal

Nicolas SADIRAC
Director of EPITECH (IT and new technologies School)

Jean-Louis SERVAN-SCHREIBER
Journalist, essayist, Director of the magazine "Psychologies"

Jean STAUNE

Nathan STERN
Sociologist, founder of Peuplade

Ezra SULEIMAN
Professor of Political Sciences, Princeton University

Dominique THYS
Delegated Administrator to the General direction of MAIF

Jean VIARD
Senior CNRS researcher with CEVIPOF, Sciences-Po political research centre

Patrick VIVERET
Philosopher, Senior member of the Auditor-General's Department (Cour des Comptes)

See all our speakers since 2005

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