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Published on Dec 14, 2010
Associate Professor, Dr. Susan Krumdieck, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Canterbury. Susan is the convener of the Signs of Change conference. She gives the opening keynote address to the nation, via the interactive video link which can be seen in the background. Her power point slides were visible on another screen, and also broadcast to the local venues. The conference was held in 6 local venues from the top of the country to the bottom: Kerikeri, Auckland, Palmerston North, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill. 250 people participated in the two-day conference. They attended the conference, in the usual way, but at their local venue. Thus, all participants had people to discuss with and all presenters had a local audience. The conference saved at least $120,000 in airfares and hotel, and 459 hours in flying alone! This is the first time that we can find that a public conference was held in this low-travel manner. The subject of the conference is also unique - emerging sustainability. We also believe that this is the first "whole of society" look at what an alternative and prosperous future might be like, and how it will come about. More information on the conference and the abstracts for the talks can be found on the conference website: www.signsofchange.org.nz