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Systems Acupuncture: Addressing the Complexity in Planetary Wellbeing

Planetary wellbeing is a systemic challenge of unprecedented scale, complexity, and urgency.   It demands questioning conventional wisdom and seeking unprecedented levels of innovation and action.  Brute force actions are not an option, while piecemeal efforts are unlikely to yield systemic outcomes.  System Acupuncture is a trans-disciplinary methodology designed to craft interventions that would bring about deep system wide transformations in our most pressing global challenges. This hands-on workshop will be an introduction to Systems Acupuncture and Systems Leadership.

Led by Dr. Banny Banerjee, director and founder of Stanford Changelabs

Becoming a Planetary Health Professional: Theory to Practice.

Growing evidence reveals that humans have severely disrupted the planet’s ecosystem and if we do not make significant changes the existence of human civilization will be severely threatened. One of our greatest challenges is to rapidly shift current practice to a sustainability affirming model. We need planetary health professionals in every discipline, but this workshop focuses on shifting the paradigm for human health care. Thought leaders will spark conversation with leading edge models of human health theory, education, and practice. The audience will contribute additional insights through dialogue and thought exercises. The goal of the workshop is to initiate a practice template that other fields can use to foster transition toward the practice of planetary health.

Led by Dr. Teddie Potter, University of Minnesota School of Nursing

Restructuring Universities to Support Planetary Health

Since planetary health problems are complex system problems, understanding them and working towards solution engages multiple academic disciplines. The most productive approaches are likely to arise from a deep understanding of underlying mechanisms, an understanding that emerges from mastery of methods and perspectives at the leading edge of disciplinary expertise. Engaging creative highly skilled students to apply their insights to the great planetary health challenges of our time, requires exposing graduate students to these complex system problems and engaging them on interdisciplinary teams. This requires a university structure that supports both deep disciplinary excellence and broad interdisciplinary collaborative problem solving. Complicating this structural tension, the largest funders of university research prioritize focus on narrow questions engaging one or two disciplines. The paucity of support financial support to address the integrated interdisciplinary questions leaves crucial questions under attended to by the groups who are best placed to work towards solutions. This panel will discuss innovative approaches universities have taken to better integrate planetary health into the classroom and into research groups. The panel will also discuss short term and long term strategies for altering the funding landscape to encourage much needed research on planetary health.

Led by Dr. Steve Luby, Stanford University

Communications & Storytelling for Planetary Health

More details coming soon.

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