INV09 Convergence, Collaboration, Justice, and the Future of the Sciences

This meeting-within-a-meeting will unify and elevate three ideas that are important for the future of the sciences. First, the notion of convergence: that the most innovative and creative spaces in science are at interfaces between disciplines. Second, collaboration: that relevant, useful science depends on our ability to collaborate with people who are not professional scientists, whether that is by inviting new stakeholders into the processes of science or by contributing science to larger goals. Third, justice: that the sciences have an opportunity to help advance justice by being intentional about who we work with, the way we work, and the topics we choose to work on.

Transforming these ideas into action is not easy.  All three challenge traditional ways of working, institutional power, and do not fit the dominant paradigms for evaluating scientific work. We still have much to learn about how to best leverage and operationalize the transformative potential of each. And, while these three ideas have rich histories outside of the geosciences and champions in the geosciences, they are still emergent and mostly unconnected within the geosciences. 

Weaving these three strands together and drawing from experience outside the geosciences would accelerate progress in all three areas and build a coalition for urgently needed change. Whether pandemics, climate change, famine, or the myriad of other challenges we face, solutions require creative models for linking science to action which transcend the boundaries between disciplines and communities. Now, more than ever, we need science that is collaborative, convergent, and justice-oriented. This meeting-within-a-meeting will advance that.

Proposed Program
Land Acknowledgement
Intro by AGU leader
Panel: Listening to Leaders
Leaders from outside of science, including:

  • A public figure who managed decisions integrating multiple scientific disciplines (convergence)
  • Someone who has brought science into community-led works (collaboration)
  • A champion of environmental justice

Panelists introduce themselves through personal history and reflect on the themes before open-mic.  Might be  recorded in-home interviews, followed by moderated real-time Q&A, with extended asynchronous conversation online.

Lighting Talks/ePosters:  Stories of how we did, or didn’t, do it
Solicit abstracts that make recommendations (either do this, or don’t try this) with illustrative stories. Could be e-posters and recorded talks, online discussion, and a synthesis (perhaps with video excerpts) as a meeting product. Encourage participation from non-scientists.

Panel:  Reflecting on intersections and opportunities
A talk-show style conversation, without slides or presentations. Skilled moderator combines prepared questions with audience questions. Could be run in parts, separated by hours, to allow participation across time-zones, with mixed virtual and real participation. Panelists chosen for the influence/visibility, their work in one of the themes, and ability to articulate intersections.

An interactive town hall: A compact for geosciences for society.
Starts with a pre-released draft position statement.  Participants contribute from their own institutional/personal perspectives. Time for comments and reactions. As closing, participants will be invited to set intentions for individual and/or institutional contributions towards the goals. Organizers collect outcomes in 9 months, and share them as examples of the compact in action.

Inspirational Close, Integration, and Call to Action

December 2020

From Monday, 14 December 2020 07:00 AM

To Monday, 14 December 2020 01:00 PM