CWAJ College Women's Association of Japan

Luncheon

Luncheon and Monthly Meetings

April 2015

“Transformations toward Sustainable Societies: How does the International Community move forward?”
Speaker Kazuhiko (Kazu) Takemoto

 

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Our April speaker Kazuhiko TAKEMOTO, Director of the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability gave an interesting talk on “Transformations toward Sustainable Societies: How does the International Community move forward?”

“Sustainability” has become a key word in the international community in recent years. In fact, the heads of most States committed themselves to realizing “sustainable development” at the Rio Summit in June 1992. Since then, the importance of sustainability has increased year by year. This September, the United Nations Summit on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will be held in New York to discuss and adopt the Post 2015 Sustainable Development Agenda.

In light of these recent developments in the international community, some questions might have emerged, namely: What does sustainable development mean? What examples do we have of unsustainable development? and What actions has the international community taken to achieve sustainable development?

Our speaker addressed these questions and briefed us on developments and activities at the global level. We were inspired by efforts toward a low carbon society, with sound material cycle, living in harmony with nature. He came with deep knowledge of the topics, perspectives gained from his role as director of the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS) and experiences overseeing the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and International Satoyama Initiative (ISI) as well as his involvement developing policies on international environmental cooperation and global environment, including climate change and bio-diversity as Vice-Minister for Global Environment Affairs (2008-2010) and as a Director-General of Environmental Management Bureau (2005-08).

He served for CBD/COP10 as its Alternate President (2010), CSD-18 as its Co-Chair (2010), OECD/EPOC as Vice Chair (2004-07) and UNFCCC/COP3 as Special Assistant to its President (1997). He has been Chair of Advisory Committee of UNCRD and Council Member of International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) since 2011.

 

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In addition to our guest speaker we had a presentation by CWAJ Education Programs, Children’s English Circle (CEC), Foreign Students’ Circle (FSC) and Volunteers for the Visually Impaired (VVI). To commemorate the 40th anniversary of VVI(!!!), there was a special presentation from Michiko Mitarai, a forward thinking CWAJ member, who was involved in founding VVI in 1975.

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