Biological Extinction (Invite only workshop)

Workshop on Biological Extinction jointly sponsored by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences and held at the Vatican.

The proceedings are available here.

The Chair of our Management Committee, Sir Partha Dasgupta, was one of the organisers and presented on the workshop’s ‘Goals and Objectives’ and the ‘Summary and Conclusions’. He also spoke about Why We Are in the Sixth Extinction and What It Means to Humanity, while our co-founder Lord Martin Rees spoke about ‘Extinction: What it Means to Us’.

Read the Conference Booklet here (from the Pontifical Academy of Sciences webpage about the workshop).

Read The Guardian article about the workshop: Biologists say half of all species could be extinct by end of century. It quotes Sir Partha Dasgupta as saying:

“We need to unravel the processes that led to the ills we are now facing. That is why the Vatican symposia involve natural and social scientists, as well as scholars from the humanities. That the symposia are being held at the Papal Academy is also symbolic. It shows that the ancient hostility between science and the church, at least on the issue of preserving Earth’s services, has been quelled.”

The crucial point is to put the problem of biological extinctions in a social context, he said. “That gives us a far better opportunity of working out what we need to in the near future. We have to act quickly, however.”

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