Søren Steen Olsen took us through a historical overview of the challenge of sustainability. Looking back in time, employing a truly long term perspective, thinking in centurys, we see that there are always limits to growth, that society must always change its growth pattern if it want to ensure continuous development.
Sometimes this doesn’t succeed, and the examples of societys that were unable to cope with their growth abound: the easter island, the roman empire, the mayans and the babylonians.
But others succed, and 17th century western Europe contains numerous examples of how new ressource inputs and technologys allowed cultures to transform.
We are the living examples of this!
But if we are to succed, we must change not only structural issues, but our mindsets as well.
This insight might seem like too litttle, too late, but when thinking in centuries we see that profound developments are already underway : Steady state economy, happiness research, green tech and alternative measures to GDP.
How will we transform? We don’t know, but to find out we need to combine our brainpower – and that is why you are here today.