Changing Environments, Changing Societies

Community Responses to Environmental Uncertainty

Saturday, October 24, 2009
Smith Auditorium
Sills Hall
Bowdoin College

Cosponsored by Bowdoin College Environmental Studies Program, the McKeen Center for the Common Good, and The Nature Conservancy. Support provided by the Mellon Foundation

The symposium will provide an opportunity to explore how communities will respond and interact during the transition to a changing climate. Topics will include: the changing role and nature of water and its implications for societies, impacts on food production systems, and the impact of climate change on biodiversity.  The symposium will highlight case studies for areas where these issues are most prevalent including the Polar North, sub-Saharan Africa, and Asia, and provide a comparative analysis with similar challenges faced by areas of the Northeastern United States.

These case studies will incorporate both the natural and social science associated with these themes as well as approaches that practitioners, local communities and NGOs are taking in response to changing systems.  Within each theme, presenters will address the following questions: how are communities responding to a changing environment; what are the constraints faced by these societies/communities; what is the role of resiliency within both natural and social systems in adapting to climate change; and what are scale appropriate solutions?

The symposium is intended to attract natural scientists and social scientists and humanists as well as practitioners including international and local non-profit organizations, agencies, and faculty, staff and students from colleges and universities who are involved and interested in the linkages between the natural world and human societies in responding to a changing climate. 

The symposium is free and open to the public. 

For more information, contact Eileen Johnson at or 207-798-7157.

Chnaging Environments