Sustainability Across Disciplines

2017 Conference

March 16-17, 2017

Concordia University

Simberloff Renowned ecologist and keynote speaker Dr. Daniel Simberloff talking about biodiversity and the importance of an environmental ethic at the Sustainability Across Disciplines conference

We are proud to announce that our first ever Sustainability Across Disciplines Conference was a success! Approximately 150 people attended the conference on March 16th and 17th from the Concordia community and beyond. Over the course of the two days, we heard presentations from 38 Concordia graduate and undergraduate students and from faculty members across disciplines, from music to management. Renowned ecologist Daniel Simberloff (University of Tennessee; picture left, photo credit: Julia Bonaventura) gave an inspiring talk about the importance of an environmental ethic on March 16th. To kick off the events of March 17th, acclaimed industrial ecologist Marian Chertow (Yale) presented some potential solutions. It was a thoroughly thought-provoking two-day event. We would like to thank everyone who supported, followed, and participated in the conference.


A special thank you is due to Matthew Anderson, Carmela Cucuzzella, Ricardo Dal Farra, Jochen Jaeger, Damon Matthews, and Ketra Schmitt for their enlightening presentations, and to Daniel Simberloff and Marian Chertow for braving the snow to join us from their homes in the United States and share their inspiring work. A big thank you is also due to our numerous partners in this endeavour: the Office of the Vice President of Research & Graduate Studies; the Faculty of Arts and Science; the John Molson School of Business; the Departments of Biology; Geography, Planning and Environment; History; and Design and Computation Arts; the David O’Brien Center for Sustainable Enterprise; the CN Centre for Studies in Sustainable Supply Chain Management; the First People's Studies Program; the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Graduate Student Committee; and the Centre for Engineering in Society at Concordia University.

Congratulations to our student presenters!

Arun winning presentation M.Sc. candidate Arun Dayanadan giving his award-winning presentation a the Sustainability Across Disciplines conference

To recognize the hard work our students do and the inspiration they bring to sustainability studies, all student presenters were entered into the student award competition. Presentations were judged by a team of experts in the field, and poster presentations were voted on by conference participants through anonymous ballot throughout the connference. Although we are proud of all our student presenters for their great work, the following were particularly notable:

Best graduate student oral presentation:

(1)    Arun Dayanandan for Frightened fish: a novel approach to life skills training of Atlantic salmon (Salmo solar). Arun is a junior associate of the Loyola Sustainability Research Centre (LSRC) doing his MSc with Grant Brown in Biology.

(2)    Stefania Strantza for International environmental agreements – the impact of heterogeneity among countries. Stefania is also a junior associate of the LSRC. She is doing her PhD with Effrosyni Diamantoudi in Economics.

Mikaela Kautzky Sustainability Conference Mikaela Kautzky with her award-winning presentation about her personal zero-waste art project at the Sustainability Across Disciplines Conference

Best undergraduate student presentation:

(1)    Maggie Winchester and Katherine Spilka for Sprouting minds for the food revolution. Both Maggie and Katherine are majoring in Human Environment in Geography, Planning and Environment and completing Minors in Sustainability Studies at the Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability (LCDS).

(2)    Mikaela Kautzky for The art of going zero waste. Mikaela is doing her major in Fine Arts and completing a Minor in Diversity and the Contemporary World at the LCDS.

Elizabeth Lawrence Sustainability Conference M.Sc. candidate Elizabeth Lawrence with her award-winning poster at the Sustainability Across Disciplines Conference

Best poster presentation:

(1)    Leif Schenstead-Harris for Unsustainable islands? Climate justice and migration in the South Pacific. Leif is doing a MA in Public Policy and Public Administration in Political Science.

(2)    Elizabeth Lawrence for Population richness of North American fishes. Elizabeth is currently working on her PhD in Biology with Dylan Fraser.

Thank you to all those who joined in the conversation!

Stay tuned for exciting upcoming events from the Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability and the Loyola Sustainability Research Centre!


External Keynote Speakers

March 16th (1:30-2:30 PM in GN M-100, 1175 Rue St. Mathieu): Dr. Daniel Simberloff on The Limits of Nature: Ecosystem Services and the Sustainability of Biodiversity

Dr. Daniel Simberloff is currently Gore Hunger Professor of Environmental Science at the University of Tennessee and Editor-in-chief of the journal Biological Invasions. Dr. Simberloff has served on the Board of Governors of the Nature Conservancy, the federal Invasive Species Advisory Committee, and the editorial boards of a number of high-profile ecological journals. He has over 350 peer-reviewed scientific articles, particularly focussed on invasive species.

March 17th (9:30-10:30 AM in MB 6.260, 1450 rue Guy): Dr. Marian Chertow: Industrial Ecology: Closing the Loop

Dr. Marian Chertow is professor of industrial environmental management at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She also has faculty appointments at the Yale School of Management and the National University of Singapore. Her research and teaching focus on industrial ecology, business/environment issues, waste management, circular economy, and urban industrial systems. She is most interested in networks of companies that share physical resources across their boundaries, which has been termed “industrial symbiosis.”  


Note that Bishop Sofie Petersen, originally scheduled to present on March 17th, has had to cancel due to ill health.



Internal Keynote Speakers

March 16th (9:30-10:30 AM in GN M-100, 1175 Rue St. Mathieu):): Dr. Carmela Cucuzzella: COLLABORATOIRE: Design Experimentations with Community for Activating Ecological Knowledge

Dr. Carmela Cucuzzella is currently Concordia University Research Chair in Integrated Design, Ecology, and Sustainability (IDEAS) for the Built Environment. Find out more about her research here

March 16th (4:00-5:00 PM in GN M-100, 1175 Rue St. Mathieu):): Dr. Damon Matthews: Towards International Equity in Global Climate Mitigation Efforts

Dr. Damon Matthews is currently Concordia University Research Chair in Climate Science and Sustainability. Find out more about his research here.

March 17th (1:30-2:30 PM in MB 2.210, 1450 rue Guy): Dr. Matthew Anderson on Our Work, Our Walk: Land, Meaning, and Sustainability on Métis and Indigenous Trails

Dr Matthew Anderson is Assistant professor in the Department of Theological Studies at Concordia University. Find out more about his research here.

Plenary: March 17th, 4-5:15 PM in MB 2.210

March 17th (4:00-5:15 PM in MB 2.210, 1450 rue Guy): Sustainability Research Across Disciplines

Featuring our own Drs. Ketra Schmitt (Centre for Engineering in Society), Jochen Jaeger (Department of Geography, Planning and Environment), and Ricardo Dal Farra (Department of Music).


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