Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

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Karl Robert Eduard von Hartmann
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 4/22/20

Eduard von Hartmann
von Hartmann in 1885
Born: 23 February 1842, Berlin, Prussia
Died: 5 June 1906 (aged 64), Berlin, German Empire
Alma mater: University of Rostock
Era: 19th-century philosophy
Region: Western philosophy
School: Continental philosophy; Post-Kantian philosophy; Transcendental realism[1]; Metaphysical voluntarism; Post-Schopenhauerian pessimism; Pantheism
Main interests: Aesthetics Epistemology Metaphysics Psychology
Notable ideas: Theory of the Unconscious (Reason and Will are irreducible to each other); Pessimistic interpretation of the "best possible world" theory
Influences: Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling,[2] Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, Arthur Schopenhauer, Max Stirner, Carl Gustav Carus[3]
Influenced: Rudolf Steiner, Sigmund Freud, C. G. Jung, Hans Vaihinger, Arthur Drews

von Hartmann's grave in Berlin

Karl Robert Eduard von Hartmann (23 February 1842 – 5 June 1906) was a German philosopher, author of Philosophy of the Unconscious (1869).


Hartmann was born in Berlin, the son of Prussian Major General Robert von Hartmann and was educated with the intention of him pursuing a military career. In 1858 he entered the Guards Artillery Regiment of the Prussian Army and attended the United Artillery and Engineering School. He achieved the rank of first lieutenant but took leave from the army in 1865 due to a chronic knee problem. After some hesitation between pursuing music or philosophy, he decided to make the latter his profession, and in 1867 obtained a Ph.D. from the University of Rostock. In 1868 he formally resigned from the army.[4] After the great success of his first work Philosophy of the Unconscious (1869)—the publication of which led to Hartmann being embroiled in the pessimism controversy in Germany[5][6]—he rejected professorships offered to him by the universities of Leipzig, Göttingen and Berlin. He subsequently returned to Berlin.[7] For many years, he lived a retired life of study as an independent scholar,[8] doing most of his work in bed, while suffering great pain.[9]

Hartmann married Agnes Taubert (1844–1877) on 3 July 1872 in Charlottenburg. After her death, he married Alma Lorenz (1854-1931) on 4 November 1878 in Bremen. The marriages produced six children.[10]

He died at Gross-Lichterfelde[7] in 1906 and is buried in an honorary grave in the Columbiadamm Cemetery in Berlin.


His reputation as a philosopher was established by his first book, Philosophy of the Unconscious (1869; 10th ed. 1890). This success was largely due to the originality of its title, the diversity of its contents (von Hartmann professing to obtain his speculative results by the methods of inductive science, and making plentiful use of concrete illustrations), its fashionable pessimism and the vigour and lucidity of its style. The conception of the Unconscious, by which von Hartmann describes his ultimate metaphysical principle is, fundamentally, not as paradoxical as it sounds, being merely a new and mysterious designation for the Absolute of German metaphysicians.[7]

In philosophy, the Absolute is "the sum of all being, actual and potential". In monistic idealism, it serves as a concept for the "unconditioned reality which is either the spiritual ground of all being or the whole of things considered as a spiritual unity.

The concept of "the absolute" was introduced in modern philosophy, notably by Hegel, for "the sum of all being, actual and potential". For Hegel, states the philosophy scholar Martin Heidegger, the Absolute is "the spirit, that which is present to itself in the certainty of unconditional self-knowing". According to Hegel, states Frederick Copleston – a historian of philosophy, "Logic studies the Absolute 'in itself'; the philosophy of Nature studies the Absolute 'for itself'; and the philosophy of Spirit studies the Absolute 'in and for itself'. The concept is also found in the works of F.W.J. Schelling, and was anticipated by Johann Gottlieb Fichte. In English philosophy, F. H. Bradley has distinguished the concept of Absolute from God, while Josiah Royce, the founder of American idealism school of philosophy, has equated them.

-- Absolute (philosophy), by Wikipedia

The Unconscious is both Will and Reason (the latter concept also interpreted as Idea) and the absolute all-embracing ground of all existence). Von Hartmann thus combines pantheism with panlogism in a manner adumbrated by Schelling in his positive philosophy. Nevertheless, Will and not Reason is the primary aspect of the Unconscious, whose melancholy career is determined by the primacy of the Will and the latency of the Reason. Will is void of reason when it passes from potentiality to actual willing.[7] The original state of the Unconscious is one of potentiality, in which, by pure chance, the Will begins to strive. In the transition state, called that of the empty Will, there is no definite end. Acting on its own, the Will creates absolute misery.[8]

To avoid the unhappiness of aimless desire, the Will realizes the ideas already potentially present and the Unconscious becomes actual. The existence of the universe is the result, then, of the illogical Will, but its characteristics and laws are all due to the Idea or Reason and are, therefore, logical.[8] It is the best of all possible worlds, which contains the promise of the redemption of the Unconscious from actual existence by the exercise of Reason in partnership with the Will in the consciousness of the enlightened pessimist.[7]

The history of the world is that given by natural science, and particular emphasis is laid upon the Darwinian theory of evolution. Humanity developed from the animal, and with the appearance of the first human being the deliverance of the world is in sight, for only in the human being does consciousness reach such height and complexity as to act independently of the Will. As consciousness develops, there is a constantly growing recognition of the fact that deliverance must lie in a return to the original state of non-willing, which means the non-existence of all individuals and the potentiality of the Unconscious.[8] When the greater part of the Will in existence is so far enlightened by reason as to perceive the inevitable misery of existence, a collective effort to will non-existence will be made, and the world will relapse into nothingness, the Unconscious into quiescence.[7]

Von Hartmann called his philosophy a transcendental realism, because in it he professed to reach by means of induction from the broadest possible basis of experience a knowledge of that which lies beyond experience. A certain portion of consciousness, namely perception, begins, changes and ends without our consent and often in direct opposition to our desires. Perception, then, cannot be adequately explained from the ego alone, and the existence of things outside experience must be posited. Moreover, since they act upon consciousness and do so in different ways at different times, they must have those qualities assigned to them which would make such action possible. Causality is thus made the link that connects the subjective world of ideas with the objective world of things.[8]

An examination of the rest of experience, especially such phenomena as instinct, voluntary motion, sexual love, artistic production and the like, makes it evident that Will and Idea, unconscious but teleological, are everywhere operative, and that the underlying force is one and not many. This thing-in-itself may be called the Unconscious. It has two equally original attributes, namely, Will and Idea (or Reason).[8]

The Unconscious appears as a combination of the metaphysics of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel with that of Arthur Schopenhauer.[7] In von Hartmann's view, Hegel and Schopenhauer were both wrong in making Idea or Reason subordinate to Will or Will subordinate to Idea or Reason; on the contrary, neither can act alone, and neither is the result of the other. The Will's lack of logic causes the existence of the "that" (German: Daß) of the world; the Idea or Reason, though not conscious, is logical, and determines the essence, the "what" (German: Was). The endless and vain striving of the Will necessitates the great preponderance of suffering in the universe, which could not well be more wretched than it is. Nevertheless, it must be characterized as the best possible world, for both nature and history are constantly developing in the manner best adapted to the ending of the world; and by means of increasing consciousness the idea, instead of prolonging suffering to eternity, provides a refuge from the evils of existence in non-existence.[8]

Von Hartmann is a pessimist, for no other view of life recognizes that evil necessarily belongs to existence and can cease only with existence itself. But he is not an unmitigated pessimist.[8] The individual's happiness is indeed unattainable either here and now or hereafter and in the future, but he does not despair of ultimately releasing the Unconscious from its sufferings. He differs from Schopenhauer in making salvation collective by the negation of the will to live depend on a collective social effort and not on individualistic asceticism. The conception of a redemption of the Unconscious also supplies the ultimate basis of von Hartmann's ethics. We must provisionally affirm life and devote ourselves to social evolution, instead of striving after a happiness which is impossible; in so doing we shall find that morality renders life less unhappy than it would otherwise be. Suicide, and all other forms of selfishness, are highly reprehensible. His realism enables him to maintain the reality of Time, and so of the process of the world's redemption.[7]

The essential feature of the morality built upon the basis of Hartmann's philosophy is the realization that all is one and that, while every attempt to gain happiness is illusory, yet before deliverance is possible, all forms of the illusion must appear and be tried to the utmost. Even he who recognizes the vanity of life best serves the highest aims by giving himself up to the illusion, and living as eagerly as if he thought life good. It is only through the constant attempt to gain happiness that people can learn the desirability of nothingness; and when this knowledge has become universal, or at least general, deliverance will come and the world will cease. No better proof of the rational nature of the universe is needed than that afforded by the different ways in which men have hoped to find happiness and so have been led unconsciously to work for the final goal. The first of these is the hope of good in the present, the confidence in the pleasures of this world, such as was felt by the Greeks. This is followed by the Christian transference of happiness to another and better life, to which in turn succeeds the illusion that looks for happiness in progress, and dreams of a future made worth while by the achievements of science. All alike are empty promises, and known as such in the final stage, which sees all human desires as equally vain and the only good in the peace of Nirvana.[8]

The relation between philosophy and religion lies in their common recognition of an underlying unity, which transcends all the apparent differences and divisions due to individual phenomena. Many changes must take place in the existing religions before they will be suited to modern conditions, and the resulting religion of the future will be a concrete monism.[8]

Von Hartmann's Philosophy of the Unconscious has been the subject of many different estimates, but is regarded as having less intrinsic than historical value. Its influence upon other thinkers was especially marked during the years following its first appearance, but by the early 20th century that influence had much decreased.[8] However, there are some grounds for considering it as providing the connection of thought between Schopenhauer's philosophy of the 'Will' and Sigmund Freud's psychology of the 'unconscious'. In a sense his thought creates the bridge between the Post-Kantian views of Will (in particular Schopenhauer's) and the Zürich school of psychology.[11]


Rudolf Steiner, referring to Hartmann's Critical Establishment of Transcendental Realism (Kritische Grundlegung des transzendentalen Realismus, 2nd Edition Berlin, 1875) gave his opinion, in the preface to his own book Truth and Knowledge (1892), that Hartmann's world-view was "the most significant philosophical work of our time".[12]

Carl Jung wrote in his autobiography, Memories, Dreams, Reflections (1963), that he had read von Hartmann "assiduously".[13]

Philipp Mainländer dedicated an essay to the philosophy of Von Hartmann. He did not consider him to be a genuine philosopher, because he did not start his philosophy with an epistemological research, despite the warnings of Kant and Schopenhauer. The criticism has been described as an attack abounding in clean hits but marred by bitter sarcasm,[14] such as "is the coitus a sacrifice the individual makes? You must be -– I repeat it -– a very strangely organized being"[Note 1], and for denying Schopenhauer's deduction that the will is thing in itself: "you also have the sad honor, to stand at the same level as those who have misunderstood Copernicus and still confidently believe that the sun turns around the earth."[Note 2]

Friedrich Nietzsche offers a scathing criticism of von Hartmann, calling his philosophy "unconscious irony" and "roguery", in the second of his Untimely Meditations, On the Use and Abuse of History for Life.[15]

British film-maker and author Edouard d'Araille provides a modern-day appraisal of the philosophy of von Hartmann in his introductory essay to the 2001 Edition (3 Volumes) of The Philosophy of the Unconscious. He evaluates von Hartmann as the vital link between the vitalism of Arthur Schopenhauer and the psychology of the Unconscious of Sigmund Freud.[16]


Von Hartmann's numerous works extend to more than 12,000 pages. They may be classified into:


• Das Ding an sich und seine Beschaffenheit ("The thing in itself and its nature", 1871)
• Grundprobleme der Erkenntnistheorie ("Fundamental problems of epistemology", 1889)
• Kategorienlehre ("Doctrine of the Categories", 1896)
• Phänomenologie des sittlichen Bewußtseins ("Phenomenology of Moral Consciousness", 1879)
• Die Philosophie des Schönen ("'The Philosophy of the Beautiful", 1887)
• Die Religion des Geistes ("The Religion of the Spirit"; 1882)
• Philosophie des Unbewussten ("Philosophy of the Unconscious", 3 vols., which now include his, originally anonymous, self-criticism, Das Unbewusste vom Standpunkte der Physiologie und Descendenztheorie, and its refutation, Eng. trans. by William Chatterton Coupland, 1884)
• System der Philosophie im Grundriss, ("Plan for a System of Philosophy", 8 vols, 1907–09: posthumous)
• Beiträge zur Naturphilosophie ("Contributions to Natural Philosophy", 1876)

Historical and critical

• Das religiöse Bewusstsein der Menschheit (The Religious Consciousness of Mankind in the Stages of Its Development; 1881)
• Geschichte der Metaphysik (2 vols.)
• Kants Erkenntnistheorie
• Kritische Grundlegung des transcendentalen Realismus (Critical Grounds of Transcendental Realism)
• Uber die dialektische Methode
• Lotzes Philosophie (1888) (a study on Hermann Lotze)
• Zur Geschichte und Begründung des Pessimismus (1880)
• Neukantianismus, Schopenhauerismus, Hegelianismus
• Geschichte der deutschen Ästhetik und Kant
• Die Krisis des Christentums in der modernen Theologie (The Crisis of Christianity in Modern Theology; 1880)
• Philosophische Fragen der Gegenwart
• Ethische Studien
• Aesthetik (1886–87)
• Moderne Psychologie
• Das Christentum des neuen Testaments
• Die Weltanschauung der modernen Physik
• Wahrheit und Irrthum im Darwinismus (1875)
• Zur Reform des höheren Schulwesens (1875)


• Aphorismen über das Drama (1870)
• Shakespeares Romeo und Juliet (1875)
• Soziale Kernfragen (The Fundamental Social Questions; 1894)
• Moderne Probleme
• Tagesfragen
• Zwei Jahrzehnte deutscher Politik und die gegenwärtige Weltlage (1888)
• Das Judentum in Gegenwart und Zukunft (Judaism in the Present and the Future; 1885)
• Die Selbstzersetzung des Christentums und die Religion der Zukunft (1874)
• Gesammelte Studien
• Der Spiritismus (1885)
• Die Geisterhypothese des Spiritismus (The Ghost Theory in Spiritism; 1891)
• Zur Zeitgeschichte

His select works were published in 10 volumes.


1. "Ist der Beischlaf ein Opfer, das das Individuum bringt? Sie müssen – ich wiederhole es – ein ganz sonderbar organisirtes Wesen sein."
2. "Sie haben auch den traurigen Ruhm, auf gleicher Stufe mit Jenen zu stehen, welche Copernicus nicht begriffen haben und nach wie vor zuversichtlich glauben, daß sich die Sonne um die Erde drehe."


1. Beiser, Frederick C., Weltschmerz: Pessimism in German Philosophy, 1860-1900, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016, p. 147.
2. Beiser, Frederick C., Weltschmerz: Pessimism in German Philosophy, 1860-1900, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016, p. 129.
3. Jung, C. G. ([1959] 1969). The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious, Collected Works, Volume 9, Part 1, Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-01833-2, par. 259: "Although various philosophers, among them Leibniz, Kant, and Schelling, had already pointed very clearly to the problem of the dark side of the psyche, it was a physician who felt impelled, from his scientific and medical experience, to point to the unconscious as the essential basis of the psyche. This was C. G. Carus, the authority whom Eduard von Hartmann followed."
4. Darnoi, Dennis N. Kenedy (6 December 2012). The Unconscious and Eduard von Hartmann: A Historico-Critical Monograph. Springer. ISBN 9789401195683.
5. After Hegel. Princeton University Press. 7 September 2014. doi:10.23943/princeton/9780691163093.003.0006. ISBN 9780691163093.
6. Beiser, Frederick C. (1 May 2016). Weltschmerz: Pessimism in German Philosophy, 1860–1900. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198768715.001.0001. ISBN 9780198768715.
7. One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Hartmann, Karl Robert Eduard von". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
8. One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Grace Neal Dolson (1920). "Hartmann, Karl Robert Edouard von" . In Rines, George Edwin (ed.). Encyclopedia Americana.
9. Gilman, D. C.; Peck, H. T.; Colby, F. M., eds. (1905). "Hartmann, Karl Robert Eduard von" . New International Encyclopedia(1st ed.). New York: Dodd, Mead.
10. "Digitale Sammlungen / Gothaisches genealogisches... [284]". Retrieved 11 September 2019.
11. 'Philosopher of the Unconscious' by Edouard d'Araille (Introduction to Vol. 1 of The Philosophy of the Unconscious [2006 Ed./LTMI])
12. Rudolf Steiner, Truth and Knowledge, Introduction to The Philosophy of Freedom, 1892 [1]
13. Carl Jung (1963). Memories, Dreams, Reflections. Random House. p. 101. ISBN 0-679-72395-1.
14. Tsanoff, Radoslav (1931). The Nature of Evil. p. 356.
15. Friedrich Nietzsche (1874). Untimely Meditations. E. W. Fritzsch.Wikisource:On the Use and Abuse of History for Life
16. Karl Robert (2001). The Philosophy of the Unconscious (3 volumes). Living Time Media International. p. ?. ISBN 978-1905820481.

External links

• Works by Karl Robert Eduard von Hartmann at Project Gutenberg
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Mon Apr 27, 2020 6:46 am

The Death of a Peer, or, Lord Lyttelton's Ghost
by Katherine Langrish
March 4, 2013

Thomas, Second Baron Lyttelton

“Sir,” said Dr Johnson to his friend Dr Adams, “it is the most extraordinary thing that has happened in my day.”

He was speaking of the mysterious circumstances attending the death of Thomas, Second Baron Lyttelton, known - in true Georgette Heyer fashion - as ‘the wicked Lord Lyttelton’, born 30 January 1744, and died, as we shall see, on the night of the 27th November 1779.

Born with every advantage, Lyttelton was educated at Eton and Oxford, a charming and talented boy: too charming and talented for his own good, perhaps, for he became a notorious rake. He fought duels, and ‘excelled the ordinary model of young debauchery everywhere’. He married to pay his gambling debts and then ran off to Paris with a barmaid; he entered the House of Commons in 1768 as MP for Bewdley, but was unseated for bribery the following year; he disappeared again to the Continent; but when his father died in 1774 he returned and took his seat in the Lords where, to secure his support, ministers bought him over with a lucrative sinecure – something which would pay him money and for which he would have to do little or no work – the ancient post of Chief Justice of Eyre beyond the Trent.

Four years later, however, on the 25th November 1779, (possibly disappointed by his failure to obtain another sinecure and become a Keeper of the Privy Seals) Lyttelton changed sides and denounced Government and Court in a vitriolic speech. Horace Walpole comments ‘Lyttelton … has turned against the Court.' Regarding his existing sinecure, Lyttelton said, ‘Perhaps I may not keep it long.’

He was correct. By midnight on November 27th, he was dead.

On the night before his speech – the night of Wednesday 24th November – Lyttelton saw a ghost which told him he would die within three days. Between the Wednesday and the Friday, he mentioned this to various friends and acquaintances: Rowan Hamilton, and one Captain Ascough, who told a lady, who told another lady named Mrs Thrale who wrote it down in her diary on Sunday 28th November, the morning after Lyttelton’s midnight death:

Yesterday a lady from Wales dropped in and said that she had been at Drury Lane on Friday night. “How,” I asked, “were you entertained?” “Very strangely indeed! Not with the play, though, but the discourse of a Captain Ascough, who averred that a friend of his, Lord Lyttelton, has SEEN A SPIRIT, who warned him that he will die in three days. I have thought of nothing else since.”

Horace Walpole, writing to a friend on Monday November 29th, says:

Lord Lyttelton is dead suddenly. …The story is given out, that he looked ill, AND HAD SAID HE SHOULD NOT LIVE THREE DAYS; that he had gone to his house in Epsom… with a caravan of nymphs; and on Saturday had retired before supper to take rhubarb; returned, supped heartily, went into the next room and died in an instant.

Within a short time, however, Walpole has picked up on the gossip around town: Lyttleton had claimed to have seen a robin – or some other bird – which changed into a woman and delivered him a death warning. By December 11th Walpole writes with dry humour to another friend that ghost stories are back in fashion!

Lord Lyttelton’s vision has revived the taste; though it seems a little odd that an APPARITION should despair of getting access to his lordship’s bed, in the shape of a young woman, without being forced to use the disguise of a robin red-breast.

The ‘nymphs’ to whom Walpole refers in his first letter were the three Misses Amphlett; residing with their ‘chaperon’ Mrs Flood at Lyttelton’s house in Hill Street, Berkeley Square. A few months later, in February 1780, Lord Westcote, Lyttelton’s uncle, questioned them, and wrote:

On November 25th, at breakfast in Hill Street, Lord Lyttelton told the young ladies and their chaperon that he had had an extraordinary DREAM.

He seemed to be in a room which a bird flew into; the bird changed to a woman in white, who told him he should die in three days.

He ‘did not much regard it, because he could in some measure account for it; for that a few days before he had been with Mrs Dawson, when a robin red-breast flew into her room.’ On the morning of Saturday [the 27th] he told the same ladies that he was very well and believed he should ‘BILK THE GHOST’. On that day – Saturday – he …went to bed after eleven, ordered rolls for breakfast, and, in bed, ‘died without a groan’ as his servant was disengaging him from his waistcoat.

There was no inquest.

And there's a postscript: on the fatal night, 27th November 1779, Mr Miles Peter Andrews, a friend of Lyttelton’s who was staying at Dartford, was woken when his bed-curtains were pulled open and he was confronted by Lord Lyttelton ‘in his robe de chambre and nightcap’. Suspecting a practical joke, Andrews rang the bell for his servant, and on turning back found Lord Lyttelton gone. The house and garden were searched in vain, and about four in the afternoon of the next day, a friend arrived with news of Lyttelton’s death. The event was recorded in the next number of the Scots Magazine, December 1779.

But let us return to Dr Johnson, with whom we began, speaking of the mysterious affair with his friend Dr Adams. Johnson was famously afraid of death. He continues, “I heard it with my own ears from his uncle Lord Westcote. I am so glad to have evidence of the spiritual world that I am willing to believe it.”

Dr Adams replies (doubtless alluding to the Scriptures), “You have evidence enough – good evidence, which needs no support.”

“I like to have more!” Dr Johnson growls.
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Sat May 02, 2020 7:08 am

Agenda 21
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/2/20

Agenda 21
Cover of the first edition (paperback)
Author: United Nations (1992)
Country: United States
Language: English, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Genre: Non-fiction
Publisher: United Nations
Publication date: 23 April 1992 (28 years ago)
Media type: Print (Paperback), HTML, PDF
Pages: 300 pp
ISBN 978-92-1-100509-7

Agenda 21[1] is a non-binding action plan of the United Nations with regard to sustainable development.[2] It is a product of the Earth Summit (UN Conference on Environment and Development) held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1992. It is an action agenda for the UN, other multilateral organizations, and individual governments around the world that can be executed at local, national, and global levels.

The "21" in Agenda 21 refers to the original target year of 2021 where they were hoping to achieve their development goals by then. It has been affirmed and had a few modifications at subsequent UN conferences. Since it found 2021 was an overly optimistic date, its new timeline is targeting 2030. Its aim is to achieve global sustainable development. One major objective of the Agenda 21 initiative is that every local government should draw its own local Agenda 21. Since 2015, Sustainable Development Goals or also known as the Millennium Development Goals are included in the newer Agenda 2030.


Agenda 21 is a 351-page document divided into 40 chapters that have been grouped into 4 sections:

• Section I: Social and Economic Dimensions is directed toward combating poverty, especially in developing countries, changing consumption patterns, promoting health, achieving a more sustainable population, and sustainable settlement in decision making.
• Section II: Conservation and Management of Resources for Development includes atmospheric protection, combating deforestation, protecting fragile environments, conservation of biological diversity (biodiversity), control of pollution and the management of biotechnology, and radioactive wastes.

• Section III: Strengthening the Role of Major Groups includes the roles of children and youth, women, NGOs, local authorities, business and industry, and workers; and strengthening the role of indigenous peoples, their communities, and farmers.
• Section IV: Means of Implementation includes science, technology transfer, education, international institutions, and financial mechanisms.[3]

Development and evolution

The full text of Agenda 21 was made public at the UN Conference on Environment and Development (Earth Summit), held in Rio de Janeiro on 13 June 1992, where 178 governments voted to adopt the program. The final text was the result of drafting, consultation, and negotiation, beginning in 1989 and culminating at the two-week conference.

Rio+5 (1997)

In 1997, the UN General Assembly held a special session to appraise the status of Agenda 21 (Rio +5). The Assembly recognized progress as "uneven" and identified key trends, including increasing globalization, widening inequalities in income, and continued deterioration of the global environment. A new General Assembly Resolution (S-19/2) promised further action.

Rio+10 (2002)

Main article: World Summit on Sustainable Development

The Johannesburg Plan of Implementation, agreed to at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (Earth Summit 2002), affirmed UN commitment to "full implementation" of Agenda 21, alongside achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and other international agreements.

Agenda 21 for culture (2002)

Main article: Agenda 21 for culture

The first World Public Meeting on Culture, held in Porto Alegre, Brazil, in 2002, came up with the idea to establish guidelines for local cultural policies, something comparable to what Agenda 21 was for the environment.[4] They are to be included in various subsections of Agenda 21 and will be carried out through a wide range of sub-programs beginning with G8 countries.

Rio+20 (2012)

Main article: United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development

In 2012, at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development the attending members reaffirmed their commitment to Agenda 21 in their outcome document called "The Future We Want". Leaders from 180 nations participated.

Sustainable Development Summit (2015)

Main article: Sustainable Development Goals

Agenda 2030, also known as the Sustainable Development Goals, was a set of goals decided upon at the UN Sustainable Development Summit in 2015.[5] It takes all of the goals set by Agenda 21 and re-asserts them as the basis for sustainable development, saying, "We reaffirm all the principles of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development…”[6] Adding onto those goals from the original Rio document, a total of 17 goals have been agreed on, revolving around the same concepts of Agenda 21; people, planet, prosperity, peace, and partnership.[7]


The Commission on Sustainable Development acts as a high-level forum on sustainable development and has acted as preparatory committee for summits and sessions on the implementation of Agenda 21. The UN Division for Sustainable Development acts as the secretariat to the Commission and works "within the context of" Agenda 21.

Implementation by member states remains voluntary, and its adoption has varied.

Local level

See also: International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives

The implementation of Agenda 21 was intended to involve action at international, national, regional and local levels. Some national and state governments have legislated or advised that local authorities take steps to implement the plan locally, as recommended in Chapter 28 of the document. These programs are often known as "Local Agenda 21" or "LA21".[8] For example, in the Philippines, the plan is "Philippines Agenda 21" (PA21). The group, ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability, formed in 1990; today its members come from over 1,000 cities, towns, and counties in 88 countries and is widely regarded as a paragon of Agenda 21 implementation.[9]

Europe turned out to be the continent where LA21 was best accepted and most implemented.[10] In Sweden, for example, all local governments have implemented a Local Agenda 21 initiative.[11]

Regional levels

The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs' Division for Sustainable Development monitors and evaluates progress, nation by nation, towards the adoption of Agenda 21, and makes these reports available to the public on its website.[12]


Australia is a signatory to Agenda 21 and 88 of its municipalities subscribe to ICLEI, an organization that promotes Agenda 21 globally. Australia's membership is second only to that of the United States.[13]


In Africa, national support for Agenda 21 is strong and most countries are signatories. But support is often closely tied to environmental challenges specific to each country; for example, in 2002 Sam Nujoma, who was then President of Namibia, spoke about the importance of adhering to Agenda 21 at the 2002 Earth Summit, noting that as a semi-arid country, Namibia sets a lot of store in the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).[14] Furthermore, there is little mention of Agenda 21 at the local level in indigenous media. Only major municipalities in sub-Saharan African countries are members of ICLEI. Agenda 21 participation in North African countries mirrors that of Middle Eastern countries, with most countries being signatories but little to no adoption on the local-government level. Countries in sub-Saharan Africa and North Africa generally have poorly documented Agenda 21 status reports. By contrast, South Africa's participation in Agenda 21 mirrors that of modern Europe, with 21 city members of ICLEI and support of Agenda 21 by national-level government.

North America

United States

The national focal point in the United States is the Division Chief for Sustainable Development and Multilateral Affairs, Office of Environmental Policy, Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, U.S. Department of State.[15] A June 2012 poll of 1,300 United States voters by the American Planning Association found that 9% supported Agenda 21, 6% opposed it, and 85% thought they didn't have enough information to form an opinion.[16]


The United States is a signatory country to Agenda 21, but because Agenda 21 is a legally non-binding statement of intent and not a treaty, the United States Senate did not hold a formal debate or vote on it. It is therefore not considered to be law under Article Six of the United States Constitution. President George H. W. Bush was one of the 178 heads of government who signed the final text of the agreement at the Earth Summit in 1992,[17][18] and in the same year Representatives Nancy Pelosi, Eliot Engel and William Broomfield spoke in support of United States House of Representatives Concurrent Resolution 353, supporting implementation of Agenda 21 in the United States.[16][19] Created by a 1993 Executive Order, the President's Council on Sustainable Development (PCSD) is explicitly charged with recommending a national action plan for sustainable development to the President. The PCSD is composed of leaders from government and industry, as well as from environmental, labor and civil rights organizations. The PCSD submitted its report, "Sustainable America: A New Consensus", to the President in early 1996. In the absence of a multi-sectoral consensus on how to achieve sustainable development in the United States, the PCSD was conceived to formulate recommendations for the implementation of Agenda 21.

In the United States, over 528 cities are members of ICLEI, an international sustainability organization that helps to implement the Agenda 21 and Local Agenda 21 concepts across the world. The United States has nearly half of the ICLEI's global membership of 1,200 cities promoting sustainable development at a local level.[13] The United States also has one of the most comprehensively documented Agenda 21 status reports.[20] In response to the opposition, Don Knapp, U.S. spokesman for the ICLEI, has said "Sustainable development is not a top-down conspiracy from the U.N., but a bottom-up push from local governments".[16]

The Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry successfully lobbied against an anti-sustainable development bill in 2012, arguing "It would be bad for business" as it could drive away corporations that have embraced sustainable development.[16]


Anti-Agenda 21 theories have circulated in the U.S. Some Tea Party movement activists and others promoted the notion that Agenda 21 was part of a UN plot to deny property rights, undermine U.S. sovereignty, or force citizens to move to cities.[21][22][9][16][23] Activists believed that the non-binding UN resolution was "the linchpin in a plot to subjugate humanity under an eco-totalitarian regime."[22] The conspiracy had its roots in anti-environmentalist ideology and opposition to land-use regulation.[23]


[Vandana Shiva] So we are talking of the old oil economy trying to maintain itself now through another raw material, the green planet. The only reason corn and soy has been planted for biofuel in this country is the subsidies make it profitable. I think the big crisis of our times is our minds have been manipulated to give power to illusions. We shifted to measuring growth, not in terms of how life is enriched, but in terms of how life is destroyed.

-- Planet of the Humans, directed by Jeff Gibbs

Agenda 21 fears have played a role in opposition to local government's efforts to promote resource and land conservation, build bike lanes, and construct hubs for public transportation.[21] The non-profit group ICLEI — Local Governments for Sustainability USA – was targeted by anti-Agenda 21 activists.[21] In 2012 Glenn Beck co-wrote a dystopian novel titled Agenda 21 based in part on concepts discussed in the UN plan.[24][25][26] In the same year, fears of Agenda 21 "went mainstream" when the Republican National Committee adopted a platform resolution stated that "We strongly reject the U.N. Agenda 21 as erosive of American sovereignty."[27][22]

Several state and local governments have considered or passed motions and legislation opposing Agenda 21.[9][16][22] Most such bills failed, "either dying in committee, getting defeated on the statehouse floor or – in the case of Missouri's 2013 bill – getting vetoed by the governor."[22] In Texas, for example, broadly worded legislation that would prohibit any governmental entity from accepting from or granting money to any "nongovernmental or intergovernmental organization accredited by the United Nations to implement a policy that originated in the Agenda 21 plan" was defeated because it could have cut off funding for groups such as 4-H, the Boy Scouts of America, and the Texas Wildlife Association.[22] In Arizona, a similarly sweeping bill was introduced in the Arizona State Legislature seeking to mandate that the state could not "adopt or implement the creed, doctrine, or principles or any tenet" of Agenda 21 and to prohibit the state "implementing programs of, expending any sum of money for, being a member of, receiving funding from, contracting services from, or giving financial or other forms of aid to" an array of sustainability organizations.[22] The bill, which was opposed by the state chamber of commerce and the mayor of Phoenix, was defeated in 2012.[22] Alabama was one state that did adopt an anti-Agenda 21 resolution, unanimously passing in 2012 a measure to block "any future effort to 'deliberately or inadvertently infringe or restrict private property rights without due process, as may be required by policy recommendations originating in, or traceable to 'Agenda 21.'"[22]


The Agenda 21 status of European countries is generally well-documented.


France, whose national government, along with 14 cities, is a signatory, promotes nationwide programs in support of the goals of Agenda 21.[citation needed]

Baltic nations

Baltic nations formed the Baltic 21 coalition as a regional expression of Agenda 21.[28]

See also

• Agenda 2030
• Ecologically sustainable development
• EarthCheck
• Education for sustainable development
• Global Map
• Glocalization
• ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability USA
• International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives
• Man and the Biosphere Programme
• National Strategy for a Sustainable America
• Think globally, act locally
• Waste management


1. "Agenda 21 text (pdf)" (PDF).
2. "What is Agenda 21?". ICLEIUSA. Archived from the original on 12 December 2012. Retrieved 8 December 2012.
3. "Agenda 21" (PDF).
4. "Culture 21 – Agenda 21 for culture". Archived from the original on 25 December 2009. Retrieved 27 April 2018.
5. "United Nations Sustainable Development Summit 2015 .:. Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform". Archived from the original on 11 December 2017. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
6. "Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development .:. Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform". Archived from the original on 5 December 2017. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
7. "Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 25 September 2015". Archived from the original on 10 November 2015. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
8. Manchester Metropolitan University Archived 22 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine
9. Kaufman, Leslie; Kate Zernike (3 February 2012). "Activists Fight Green Projects, Seeing U.N. Plot". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 19 August 2012.
10. Smardon, Richard (2008). "A comparison of Local Agenda 21 implementation in North American, European and Indian cities". Management of Environmental Quality. 19 (1): 118–137. doi:10.1108/14777830810840408. Archived from the original on 11 June 2015. Retrieved 9 October 2013.
11. Jörby, Sofie (2002). "Local Agenda 21 in four Swedish Municipalities: a tool towards sustainability". Journal of Environmental Planning and Management. 45 (2): 219–244. doi:10.1080/09640560220116314.
12. UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs. "Areas of Work – National Information by Country or Organization". United Nations. Archived from the original on 4 August 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
13. ICLEI. "ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability: Global Members". Archived from the original on 25 July 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
14. "Namibian president calls for implementation of Agenda 21". Xinhua News Agency. 2 September 2002. Archived from the original on 15 January 2013. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
15. "United States of America". Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform. United Nations. Archived from the original on 22 October 2013.
16. "Tea Party Activists Fight Agenda 21, Seeing Threatening U.N. Plot". Huffington Post. 15 October 2012. Archived from the original on 18 October 2012. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
17. "Senators attack sustainable development, Agenda 21". The Courier-Journal. 20 February 2013. Archived from the originalon 12 October 2013.
18. "Secret agenda at city hall?". Wyoming Tribune Eagle. 4 November 2012.
19. Arnie Rosner (3 March 2012). "Agenda 21 Nancy Pelosi .mp4". Archived from the original on 23 March 2018. Retrieved 27 April 2018 – via YouTube.
20. "Agenda 21 – United States". Archived from the original on 8 October 2017. Retrieved 27 April 2018.
21. Kaufman, Leslie; Kate Zernike (4 February 2012). "Activists Fight Green Projects, Seeing U.N. Plot". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 30 May 2013.
22. Greg Harman, Agenda 21: a conspiracy theory puts sustainability in the crosshairs Archived 26 June 2017 at the Wayback Machine, The Guardian (24 June 2015).
23. Hinkes-Jones, Llewellyn (29 August 2012). "The Anti-Environmentalist Roots of the Agenda 21 Conspiracy Theory". Archived from the original on 1 October 2012. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
24. "Agenda 21 By Glenn Beck, Harriet Parke". USA Today. 2012. Archived from the original on 9 September 2012.
25. Cypher, Sarah (19 November 2012). "I got duped by Glenn Beck!". Archived from the original on 16 January 2015.
26. "Best Sellers". The New York Times. 9 December 2012. Archived from the original on 6 March 2016.
27. Jamison, Peter (30 August 2012). "Fears of Agenda 21 go mainstream in the Republican Party platform". Tampa Bay Times. Archived from the original on 3 November 2012. Retrieved 23 October 2012.
28. "Sustainable Development - Baltic 2030 -". Archived from the original on 15 November 2017. Retrieved 27 April 2018.


• Lenz, Ryan (Spring 2012). "Antigovernment Conspiracy Theorists Rail Against UN's Agenda 21 Program". Intelligence Report. Southern Poverty Law Center (145).
• Earth Summit 2012

External links

• "Agenda 21 text (pdf)" (PDF).
• United Nations Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

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Steven Clark Rockefeller
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/5/20

-- Planet of the Humans, written, produced and directed by Jeff Gibbs
-- Review: [Untitled] Reviewed Work: Spirit and Nature: Why the Environment Is a Religious Issue, by Steven C. Rockefeller, John C. Elder, by Leslie A. Muray
-- Rockefeller Brothers Fund, by Wikipedia
-- Spirit and Nature: Why the Environment Is a Religious Issue, Edited by Steven C. Rockefeller and John C. Elder
-- Is There a Buddhist Philosophy of Nature? in Mary Evelyn Tucker and Duncan Ryúken Williams, eds. Buddhism and Ecology: The Interconnection of Dharma and Deeds, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Center for the Study of World Religions, 1997, by Malcolm David Eckel
-- William Rockefeller, by
-- Bureau of Social Hygiene, by The Rockefeller Foundation Digital History
-- Rockefeller Foundation, by Wikipedia

Steven Clark Rockefeller
Born: April 19, 1936 (age 84), United States
Alma mater: Princeton University; Union Theological Seminary; Columbia University
Occupation: Professor emeritus at Middlebury College
Spouse(s): Anne-Marie Rasmussen (divorced); Barbara Bellows (m. 1991)
Children 4
Parent(s): Nelson Rockefeller; Mary Clark

Steven Clark Rockefeller (born April 19, 1936) is a fourth-generation member of the Rockefeller family, and a former dean of Middlebury College. He is the oldest living member of the family who still carries the Rockefeller name, and has been the oldest living Rockefeller since his Uncle David Rockefeller died (at the age of 101) in March 2017.

Rockefeller is a philanthropist who focuses on education, Planned Parenthood, human rights and environmental causes. He is a trustee of the Asian Cultural Council and an advisory trustee of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. He has also served as a director of the Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.


He is the second-oldest son of former United States Vice President Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller and his first wife, Mary Rockefeller.

Rockefeller attended prestigious Deerfield Academy and received his A.B. degree from Princeton University, where he was president of The Ivy Club and also received the Moses Taylor Pyne Honor Prize. Subsequently, he obtained an M.Div. degree from the Union Theological Seminary in New York City, and a Ph.D. degree in philosophy of religion from Columbia University. He is a professor emeritus of Religion at Middlebury College in Middlebury, Vermont where he previously served as college dean and chairman of the religion department.[1]

In 1959, he married Anne-Marie Rasmussen in Søgne, Norway; Anne-Marie was a former employee in the Rockefeller household. The couple had three children before divorcing. Steven Rockefeller remarried and had one child before the marriage ended in divorce. He then wed Barbara Bellows on May 11, 1991.

In 1976, he began an intensive study of Zen Buddhism, making frequent week-long visits to the Zen Center in Rochester, where he was a trustee.

He coordinated the drafting of the Earth Charter for the Earth Charter Commission and Earth Council. In 2005, he moderated the international launch of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD) (2005–14) in its headquarters in New York, launched by UNESCO and attended by Nane Annan, the wife of Secretary General Kofi Annan.[2] He is Co-Chair of Earth Charter International Council and has written numerous essays on the Earth Charter, available at the Earth Charter website.[3]


He has edited or written three books:

• The Christ and the Bodhisattva (SUNY Series in Buddhist Studies). Edited by Donald S. Lopez Jr., and Steven C. Rockefeller. State University of New York Press (1987)
• Rockefeller, Steven C. John Dewey: Religious Faith and Democratic Humanism. Columbia University Press (1991)
Spirit and Nature -- Why the Environment Is a Religious Issue: An Interfaith Dialogue. Edited by Steven C. Rockefeller and John C. Elder. Beacon Press (1992).

Further reading

• Rasmussen, Anne-Marie. There Was Once a Time of Islands, Illusions, and Rockefellers. New York and London: Harcourt Brace, 1975.


1. "Trustees: Steven C. Rockefeller". Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Archived from the original on 2010-06-16. Retrieved 2010-01-25.
2. "International Launch of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014)" (Press release). UNESCO. 2005-03-01. Archived from the original on 2005-09-29. Retrieved 2010-01-25.
3. "The Earth Charter Initiative-Website". Earth Charter Initiative, dates?

External links

• The Cousins A 1984 New York Times profile of prominent members of the fourth-generation Rockefellers. (requires subscription)
• Steven C. Rockefeller - Rockefeller Brothers Fund website


Open Letter to the [Middlebury] President and Trustees
by Steven C. Rockefeller
The Middlebury Campus: Middlebury College's only student-run newspaper
October 12, 2015 / October 21, 2015

For five decades Middlebury College has been an outstanding leader in promoting environmental studies and international studies and in adopting sustainable operating procedures. Laurie Patton has shared with me her commitment as the College’s new president to build on and extend this admirable record of leadership. Toward this end, she would like to work in partnership with trustees, student groups, and concerned faculty and staff in an effort to identify next steps. This is a sound approach that all in the College community can support. Regarding next steps, this letter highlights one especially significant opportunity. We are at a pivotal moment in the national and international debate over the urgent need for a transition to a clean energy economy. Middlebury has the ability to influence the outcome of this critical debate by taking a public stand with a commitment to join the growing fossil fuel divestment movement. A decision by the College to divest should be viewed primarily as an act of moral and educational leadership at a time when industrial-technological civilization has lost its way and must reinvent itself.

I write this letter as a former Middlebury faculty member who taught at the College for close to three decades, served as dean of the college in the Olin Robison administration, and chaired the College’s Environmental Council during the mid-1990s. My courses included the study of environmental ethics, global ethics, and religion and ecology. I also write as a trustee and former chair of the board of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF), an international grant making foundation that has joined the fossil fuel divestment movement as part of an effort to align its investment policy with its mission and program goals. The Divest Middlebury campaign has set forth a compelling argument, and I write in support of the students who are leading this important initiative.

Scientists working in the field of climate change have turned on the alarm bells. Human development practices, especially the burning of fossil fuels, are altering the conditions on Earth that have made possible the development of civilization over the past ten thousand years. If humanity does not act with all deliberate speed and reduce its global greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, the consensus among scientists is that the ecological, economic and social damage and disruption could be catastrophic and irreversible.
The most vulnerable are the hundreds of millions of people living in poverty, but no one’s life will be unaffected. Already the negative effects of climate change are being felt by communities around the world. In addition, human development patterns have caused a tragic decline in the planet’s biodiversity and natural beauty, and ongoing global warming will accelerate this process.

Since action on climate change is about preventing immense harm and promoting the common good, it is first and foremost a fundamental moral issue. With the risk of dangerous consequences growing with every day of delayed action, it is also an extraordinarily urgent moral challenge. In a recent declaration, the Pontifical Academy of Sciences at the Vatican in Rome stated the matter succinctly: “Human-induced climate change is a scientific reality, and its mitigation is a moral and religious imperative.” A growing chorus of religious leaders, including Pope Francis, the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, and the Dalai Lama, fully support this view. The new Encyclical Letter of Pope Francis on the environment, “Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home,” and the Pope’s addresses before Congress and the United Nations clearly and forcefully highlight the ethical and spiritual dimensions of the environmental crisis and climate change. In response to the initiative of Pope Francis, 333 Rabbis have signed a “Rabbinic Letter on the Climate Crisis.”

This year could be a turning point when the world community forms the necessary global partnership and commits to the collaborative action needed to reduce and eliminate carbon pollution. In December heads of state from the 193 governments that are party to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will meet in Paris to finalize a long delayed, legally binding climate change agreement. The goal of the negotiations is to elicit commitments that will cumulatively prevent global warming from exceeding 2 degrees Celsius since the pre-industrial era. Achieving an effective and equitable agreement in Paris is fundamental to protecting Earth’s ecological integrity, promoting human rights, and fulfilling our responsibilities to future generations. However, again and again governments controlled by short term economic and political interests have failed to address the problem of global warming. Building pressure from civil society, including from leaders in science, religion, education and philanthropy, can make a critical difference.

With the demand for change growing, governments are searching for a way forward. China and the United States, the two largest carbon polluters, have together made meaningful commitments, and many other nations have joined them. However, the commitments made to date fall far short of the reduction in emissions needed. At a special summit meeting on sustainable development this past September, the United Nations issued a path breaking declaration on “Transforming Our World” that adopts seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with 169 targets, which envision the full integration of the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the sustainable development agenda. The SDGs call for radical change, and if governments are serious about achieving the SDGs, a strong UNFCCC agreement is mandatory. By joining the divestment movement, Middlebury College can help to send that message and register its concern that governments be held accountable for fulfilling their obligations under the agreement and expand their commitments in the future as necessary.

The divestment movement has grown dramatically over the past year. A recent study, which was commissioned by the Wallace Global Fund, has found that 436 institutions have made a commitment to divest from fossil fuel companies, representing $2.6 trillion of investments—a fifty-fold increase. These institutions include the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund and two of the largest pension funds as well as foundations, colleges, universities, NGOs and religious institutions. Recognizing the significance of these developments, the Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, Christiana Figueres, has called for more institutions to divest from fossil fuels and invest in clean energy as a way to build momentum going into the Paris climate change meeting.
(Clarification regarding the $2.6 trillion of investments is needed, because in some cases the institutions involved are limiting their divestment to coal or to coal and tar sands oil or to some but not all fossil fuels companies.)

College and University trustees have a fiduciary responsibility to ensure that their institution has the financial resources to fulfill its educational mission, and they are rightly concerned to maximize returns on endowment investments and minimize risk. In pursuing its commitment to divest from fossil fuels, the RBF [Rockefeller Brothers Fund] has adopted a phased approach, eliminating investments in coal and tar sands first followed by a gradual elimination of all fossil fuels in a fiscally responsible manner. The goal of the RBF is to be completely divested of fossil fuels by the end of 2017. The Fund’s trustees have not found it necessary to alter their long standing commitment to preserve the purchasing power of the endowment. Middlebury should be able to divest from fossil fuels over several years without suffering reduced investment returns. Moreover, divesting could produce higher returns, because the fossil fuel energy sector is facing complex problems and risks. In addition to the precipitous collapse in the price of oil over the past year, which has caused some firms significant loses in market value, the big oil companies face the long term problem of stranded assets. Preventing global warming from exceeding two degrees Celsius will require leaving most of the known coal, oil, and gas reserves in the ground. In short, the transition to a clean energy economy will in all likelihood make fossil fuels a high risk investment. Many financial institutions are following this situation closely, and the Carbon Tracker Initiative is providing investors with the tools to measure economic risk associated with fossil fuels.

It is also important to recognize that renewable energy is rapidly becoming competitive with fossil fuels on cost and that corporations are coming to the realization that cutting their carbon footprint through improved efficiency and a shift to renewables is both possible and profitable. There is a global coalition of corporations that have committed to the long term goal of operating entirely with renewable energy. The New York Times reports that among the companies that have recently joined the coalition are Goldman Sachs, Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble, Starbucks, and Walmart. The transition away from fossil fuels to renewables is underway in spite of efforts by the big oil companies to prevent it and deny it. The only question is whether the transition will happen fast enough to prevent global warming from pushing the biosphere over tipping points that involve high risk. In a September Op-Ed, the president of Siemens, Joe Kaeser, announced that his global industrial manufacturing company has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2030, and reflecting on the challenge and opportunity before the business community he writes: “We have the technologies, we have the business incentive, and we have the responsibility. Now all we need is the commitment.” A decision by Middlebury’s board to divest will reinforce this message to corporate leaders, many of whom are listening with a new level of concern for the future of the planet, the global economy, and their companies.

Some argue that it is hypocritical for an institution like Middlebury to divest when the college and American society at large continue to be dependent on fossil fuels in so many ways. Is it hypocritical for someone who is addicted to cigarettes but knows that smoking is harmful and cancer causing to divest from all tobacco company stocks? Divesting is a way to help all of us wake up to the real dangers created by our addiction to fossil fuels and make the change to a cleaner, safer, more secure world.

When the RBF board and its investment committee, which includes both trustees and outside experts, began to consider joining the divestment movement, they were working with a highly skilled and successful investment manager. However, given the way its operations were structured, the investment manager concluded that it could not accomplish the goals that the RBF had set for divestment. Consequently the Fund was forced to change investment managers. Making the change has been a demanding process, but it has worked out well and the Fund now has investment managers with the expertise and flexibility that it requires. In short, there are very good alternatives, if Middlebury finds itself contending with the same kind of problem that faced the RBF.

Apart from major educational issues, as a general rule, it is not the responsibility of a college board of trustees to consider taking an official position on the many issues under debate on campus, and only under exceptional circumstances when there are very compelling moral reasons to do so should a board use divestment to support a protest movement. However, climate change is not just one environmental issue among many others or just a political issue. It is one of the defining issues of our time, and the choices made in response to the challenge will profoundly affect the lives of all Middlebury students and the future of life on Earth.

Middlebury College is a highly respected leader internationally in the field of education and a decision by its president and board of trustees to join the expanding fossil fuel divestment movement will be an act of responsible global citizenship consistent with its mission. It will have a significant impact, inspiring other institutions to support the transition to a clean energy economy and contributing to the outcome we all hope for in Paris.

Steven C. Rockefeller
Professor Emeritus of Religion
Middlebury College

Steven C. Rockefeller has had a career as a scholar and teacher, an environmental conservationist, and a philanthropist. His research, writing, and teaching have been focused on the fields of religion, philosophy and ethics. He has had a special interest in the transition to a sustainable future and the development of a relational spirituality and a global ethic for building a just, sustainable and peaceful world community.

Professor Rockefeller is professor emeritus of religion at Middlebury College, Vermont, where he taught from 1970 to 1998 and also served as dean of the college and chair of the religion department. He received his bachelor of arts degree from Princeton University in 1958, his master of divinity from Union Theological Seminary in 1963, and his doctorate in the philosophy of religion from Columbia University in 1973. He is the author of John Dewey: Religious Faith and Democratic Humanism (Columbia, 1991; Peking University, 2009) and Democratic Equality, Economic Inequality, and the Earth Charter (Earth Charter International, 2015). He is the co-editor of two books of essays, The Christ and the Bodhisattva (SUNY, 1987) and Spirit and Nature: Why the Environment is a Religious Issue (Beacon, 1992). His other publications include over fifty essays that appear in a variety of books and journals.

Professor Rockefeller and Professor John Elder organized and directed at Middlebury College in 1990 the Spirit and Nature Symposium that included the Dalai Lama and was filmed by Bill Moyers for public television. In the mid-1990s, Professor Rockefeller chaired the Middlebury College Environmental Council. Under his leadership, the Council prepared and submitted to the College president “Pathways to a Green Campus” (1995), a comprehensive environmental report on the state of the college with 22 recommendations. Professor Rockefeller served as president of the Demeter Fund, which created the Charlotte Park and Wildlife Refuge in Vermont overlooking Lake Champlain and the Adirondack Mountains. He is the founding president of the Otter Creek Child Care Center in Middlebury, Vermont.

For over thirty years Professor Rockefeller has served as a trustee of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, an international foundation with grantmaking programs in democratic practice, sustainable development, and peacebuilding. From 1998 to 2006 he chaired the RBF board of trustees. Among the other boards and commissions on which he has served are the National Commission on the Environment (organized by the World Wildlife Fund), the National Audubon Society, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the Asian Cultural Council, and the Council of the UN mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Over the past two decades, Professor Rockefeller has been actively involved in the Earth Charter Initiative, which in and through extensive worldwide, cross cultural dialogue has endeavored to identify and articulate shared values that provide an ethical foundation for the emerging global community. From 1997 to 2000, he chaired the Earth Charter international drafting committee for the Earth Charter Commission. A final version of the Earth Charter—a declaration of global interdependence and universal responsibility with fundamental principles for creating a just, sustainable and peaceful world—was launched by the Earth Charter Commission at the Peace Palace in The Hague in 2000. From 2000 to 2010, Professor Rockefeller served as co-chair of the Earth Charter International (ECI) Council. The ECI Secretariat is based at the University for Peace in Costa Rica and has affiliates in 73 different countries. The Earth Charter has been translated into over 40 languages and endorsed by over 5,000 organizations globally, including UNESCO and the World Conservation Congress of IUCN.

Professor Rockefeller lives with his wife, Professor Barbara Bellows Rockefeller, in Pound Ridge, New York.
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Wed May 06, 2020 4:58 am

Asian Cultural Council
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/5/20

Professor Rockefeller and Professor John Elder organized and directed at Middlebury College in 1990 the Spirit and Nature Symposium that included the Dalai Lama and was filmed by Bill Moyers for public television. In the mid-1990s, Professor Rockefeller chaired the Middlebury College Environmental Council. Under his leadership, the Council prepared and submitted to the College president “Pathways to a Green Campus” (1995), a comprehensive environmental report on the state of the college with 22 recommendations. Professor Rockefeller served as president of the Demeter Fund, which created the Charlotte Park and Wildlife Refuge in Vermont overlooking Lake Champlain and the Adirondack Mountains. He is the founding president of the Otter Creek Child Care Center in Middlebury, Vermont.

For over thirty years Professor Rockefeller has served as a trustee of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, an international foundation with grantmaking programs in democratic practice, sustainable development, and peacebuilding. From 1998 to 2006 he chaired the RBF board of trustees. Among the other boards and commissions on which he has served are the National Commission on the Environment (organized by the World Wildlife Fund), the National Audubon Society, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the Asian Cultural Council, and the Council of the UN mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Over the past two decades, Professor Rockefeller has been actively involved in the Earth Charter Initiative, which in and through extensive worldwide, cross cultural dialogue has endeavored to identify and articulate shared values that provide an ethical foundation for the emerging global community. From 1997 to 2000, he chaired the Earth Charter international drafting committee for the Earth Charter Commission. A final version of the Earth Charter—a declaration of global interdependence and universal responsibility with fundamental principles for creating a just, sustainable and peaceful world—was launched by the Earth Charter Commission at the Peace Palace in The Hague in 2000. From 2000 to 2010, Professor Rockefeller served as co-chair of the Earth Charter International (ECI) Council. The ECI Secretariat is based at the University for Peace in Costa Rica and has affiliates in 73 different countries. The Earth Charter has been translated into over 40 languages and endorsed by over 5,000 organizations globally, including UNESCO and the World Conservation Congress of IUCN.

-- Open Letter to the [Middlebury] President and Trustees, by Steven C. Rockefeller

Asian Cultural Council
Geographic purview of the ACC
Abbreviation: ACC
Formation: 1980 (1963 - 1979 as Asian Cultural Program of the JDR 3rd Fund)
Type: 501(c)(3) Non-profit
Purpose: Cultural exchange
Headquarters: New York City
Location: New York City; Hong Kong; Manila; Taipei; Tokyo
Region served: USA and Asia
Official language: English
Chairman: Wendy O'Neill

The Asian Cultural Council (ACC) (traditional Chinese: 亞洲文化協會; simplified Chinese: 亚洲文化协会; pinyin: Yàzhōu Wénhuà Xiéhuì; Cantonese Yale: Ajāu Màhnfa Hipwúi; Japanese: アジアン・カルチュラル・カウンシル; Korean: 아시아 문화 협회) is a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing international cultural exchange between Asia and the U.S. and between the countries of Asia through the arts. [1] Founded by John D. Rockefeller 3rd in 1963, ACC has invested over $100 million in grants to artists and arts professionals representing 16 fields and 26 countries through over 6,000 exchanges.[2]Annually, ACC supports $1.4 million in grants for individuals and organizations.[3]

ACC awards fellowship grants to artists and scholars and project grants for organizations in three categories of cross-cultural exchange: Asia-to-U.S., U.S.-to-Asia, and intra-Asia. The programming of each grant is customized to the goals of the grant recipient.

ACC is both a grantmaking and grantseeking organization. It is supported by funding from individuals, foundations, and corporations including The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation, Ford Foundation, the Henry Luce Foundation, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, Newman’s Own Foundation and The Starr Foundation.

Billy Hitchcock [Mellon] wasn't the only figure in the Mellon clan who rubbed shoulders with the espionage community. A number of Mellons served in the OSS, notably David Bruce, the OSS station chief in London (whose father-in-law, Andrew Mellon, was treasury secretary during the Depression). After the war certain influential members of the Mellon family maintained close ties with the CIA. Mellon family foundations have been used repeatedly as conduits for Agency funds. Furthermore, Richard Helms was a frequent weekend guest of the Mellon patriarchs in Pittsburgh during his tenure as CIA director (1966-1973).

-- Acid Dreams, The Complete Social History of LSD: The CIA, The Sixties, And Beyond, by Martin A. Lee & Bruce Shlain

Background: Ford Foundation and the CIA

By the late 1950s the Ford Foundation possessed over $3 billion in assets. The leaders of the Foundation were in total agreement with Washington's post-WWII projection of world power. A noted scholar of the period writes: "At times it seemed as if the Ford Foundation was simply an extension of government in the area of international cultural propaganda. The foundation had a record of close involvement in covert actions in Europe, working closely with Marshall Plan and CIA officials on specific projects" (Ibid, p.139). This is graphically illustrated by the naming of Richard Bissell as President of the Foundation in 1952. In his two years in office Bissell met often with the head of the CIA, Allen Dulles, and other CIA officials in a "mutual search" for new ideas. In 1954 Bissell left Ford to become a special assistant to Allen Dulles in January 1954 (Ibid, p. 139). Under Bissell, the Ford Foundation (FF) was the "vanguard of Cold War thinking".

One of the FF first Cold War projects was the establishment of a publishing house, Inter-cultural Publications, and the publication of a magazine Perspectives in Europe in four languages. The FF purpose according to Bissell was not "so much to defeat the leftist intellectuals in dialectical combat (sic) as to lure them away from their positions" (Ibid, p. 140). The board of directors of the publishing house was completely dominated by cultural Cold Warriors....

Another journal Der Monat funded by the Confidential Fund of the U.S. military and run by Melvin Lasky was taken over by the FF, to provide it with the appearance of independence (Ibid, p. 140).

In 1954 the new president of the FF was John McCloy. He epitomized imperial power. Prior to becoming president of the FF he had been Assistant Secretary of War, president of the World Bank, High Commissioner of occupied Germany, chairman of Rockefeller's Chase Manhattan Bank, Wall Street attorney for the big seven oil companies and director of numerous corporations. As High Commissioner in Germany, McCloy had provided cover for scores of CIA agents (Ibid, p. 141).

McCloy integrated the FF with CIA operations. He created an administrative unit within the FF specifically to deal with the CIA. McCloy headed a three person consultation committee with the CIA to facilitate the use of the FF for a cover and conduit of funds. With these structural linkages the FF was one of those organizations the CIA was able to mobilize for political warfare against the anti-imperialist and pro-communist left. Numerous CIA "fronts" received major FF grants. Numerous supposedly "independent" CIA sponsored cultural organizations, human rights groups, artists and intellectuals received CIA/FF grants. One of the biggest donations of the FF was to the CIA-organized Congress for Cultural Freedom which received $7 million by the early 1960s. Numerous CIA operatives secured employment in the FF and continued close collaboration with the Agency (Ibid, p. 143).

-- The Ford Foundation and the CIA, by James Petras

Once ambitious to become Secretary of State in a Republican administration, Henry R. Luce penned a famous article in Life magazine in 1941, called "The American Century", which defined the role of American foreign policy for the remainder of the 20th century (and perhaps beyond).

An ardent anti-Soviet, he once demanded John Kennedy invade Cuba, later to remark to his editors that if he did not, his corporation would act like Hearst during the Spanish–American War. The publisher would advance his concepts of US dominance of the "American Century" through his periodicals with the ideals shared and guided by members of his social circle, John Foster Dulles, Secretary of State and his brother, director of the CIA, Allen Dulles.

-- Henry Luce, by Wikipedia

Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong is a five-star hotel located on Connaught Road in Central, Hong Kong, owned and managed by Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group....

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group (MOHG; Chinese: 文華東方酒店), a member of the Jardine Matheson Group, is an international hotel investment and management group with luxury hotels, resorts and residences in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

-- Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, by Wikipedia

Jardine Matheson Holdings Limited (also known as Jardines) is a British conglomerate incorporated in Bermuda and headquartered in Hong Kong, with its primary listing on the London Stock Exchange and secondary listings on the Singapore Exchange and Bermuda Stock Exchange. The majority of its business interests are in Asia, and its subsidiaries include Jardine Pacific, Jardine Motors, Jardine Lloyd Thompson, Hongkong Land, Jardine Strategic Holdings, Dairy Farm, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, Jardine Cycle & Carriage and Astra International. It sponsors the Jardine Scholarship.

Jardines was one of the original Hong Kong trading houses or Hongs that date back to Imperial China and, as of December 2010, 41 percent of the company's profits were still earned in China. The company is controlled by the Keswick family, who are descendants of co-founder William Jardine's older sister, Jean Johnstone.

-- Jardine Matheson, by Wikipedia

In the 1920s, the U.S. threw its weight behind Chiang Kai-shek, whose Kuomintang Party was fighting the Communists and several other warlords for control of China. The U.S. was competing with the other colonial nations for control of China, which had a cheap labor force and represented billions in profits for U.S. corporations and investors. The problem was that the Kuomintang supported itself through the opium trade. It's well documented in the diplomatic cables between the U.S. government and its representatives in China. Historians Kinder and Walker said the Commissioner of the Bureau of Narcotics, Harry Anslinger, "clearly knew about the ties between Chiang and opium dealers."

Anslinger knew that Shanghai was "the prime producer and exporter to the illicit world drug markets," through a syndicate controlled by Du Yue-sheng, a crime lord who facilitated Chiang's bloody ascent to power in 1927. As early as 1932, Anslinger knew that Chiang's finance minister was Du's protector. He'd had evidence since 1929 that American t'ongs were receiving Kuomintang narcotics and distributing it to the Mafia. Middlemen worked with opium merchants, gangsters like Du, Japanese occupation forces in Manchuria, and Dr. Lansing Ling, "who supplied narcotics to Chinese officials traveling abroad." In 1938 Chiang Kai-shek appointed Dr. Ling head of his Narcotic Control Department.

In October 1934, the Treasury attache in Shanghai "submitted reports implicating Chiang Kai-shek in the heroin trade to North America." In 1935 the attache reported that the Superintendent of Maritime Customs in Shanghai was "acting as agent for Chiang Kaishek in arranging for the preparation and shipment of the stuff to the United States."

These reports reached Anslinger's desk, so he knew which KMT officials and trade missions were delivering dope to American t'ongs and which American Mafia drug rings were buying it. He knew the t'ongs were kicking back a percentage of the profits to finance Chiang's regime.

After Japanese forces seized Shanghai in August 1937, Anslinger was even less willing to deal honestly with the situation. By then Du was sitting on Shanghai's Municipal Board with William J. Keswick, a director of the Jardine Matheson Shipping Company. Through Keswick, Du found sanctuary in Hong Kong, where he was welcomed by a cabal of free-trading British colonialists whose shipping and banking companies earned huge revenues by allowing Du to push his drugs on the hapless Chinese. The revenues were truly immense: according to Colonel Joseph Stilwell, the U.S. military attache in China, in 1935 there were "eight million Chinese heroin and morphine addicts and another 72 million Chinese opium addicts."

Anslinger tried to minimize the problem by lying and saying that Americans were not affected. But the final decisions were made by his bosses in Washington, and from their national security perspective, the profits enabled the Kuomintang to purchase $31 million worth of fighter planes from arms dealer William Pawley to fight the Communists, and that trumped any moral dilemmas about trading with the Japanese or getting Americans addicted.

It's all documented. Check the sources I cite in my books. Plus, U.S. Congressmen and Senators in the China Lobby were profiting from the guns for drugs business too. They got kickbacks in the form of campaign funds and in exchange, they looked away as long as Anslinger told them the dope stayed overseas. After 1949, the China Lobby manipulated public hearings and Anslinger cooked the books to make sure that the Peoples Republic was blamed for all narcotics coming out of the Far East. Everyone made money and after 1949 the operation was run out of Taiwan, with CIA assistance.

-- The CIA as Organized Crime: How Illegal Operations Corrupt America and the World, by Douglas Valentine

The Keswick family (pronounced with a silent "w", "Kezzick") are a business dynasty of Scottish origin associated with the Far East since 1855 and in particular the conglomerate Jardine Matheson.

As tai-pans of Jardine Matheson & Company, the Keswick family have at some time been closely associated with the ownership or management of the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, the Indo-China Steam Navigation Company Ltd., the Canton Insurance Office Ltd, (now the HSBC Insurance Co), The Hongkong and Kowloon Wharf and Godown Company Limited, Star Ferry, Hong Kong Tramway, the Hong Kong Land Investment and Agency Co Ltd, and the Hongkong and Whampoa Dock Co Ltd.

The Hon. William Keswick (1834–1912)

The founder of the dynasty, he was born in 1834, in Dumfriesshire in the Scottish Lowlands. His grandmother, Jean Jardine Johnstone was an older sister of Dr. William Jardine, the founder of Jardine Matheson & Company. His father Thomas Keswick had married Margaret Johnstone, Jardine's niece and daughter of Jean, and entered the Jardine business. The company operated as opium traders and had a major influence in the First and Second Opium Wars although the company stopped this trading in 1870 to pursue a broad range of other trading interests including shipping, railways, textiles and property development.

William arrived in China and Hong Kong in 1855, the first of five generations of the Keswick family to be associated with Jardines. He established a Jardine Matheson office in Yokohama, Japan in 1859. He returned to Hong Kong to become a partner of the firm in 1862. He became managing partner (Taipan) from 1874 to 1886. He left Hong Kong in 1886 to work with Matheson & Co. in London as a senior director responsible only to Sir Robert Jardine (1825–1905), a son of David Jardine, William Jardine's older brother and the head of Mathesons in London.

-- Keswick family, by Wikipedia

Originally called The Mandarin, the hotel was built on the former site of the colonial Queen's Building on the waterfront in Central Hong Kong. From the onset, the concept was to create a hotel firmly rooted in Eastern culture, providing gracious service to a standard generally experienced only in the Asia–Pacific region. The original cost of construction totalled HKD 42 million, while the interior design amounted to even 50% more at HKD 66 million, sparing no luxury or detail. John Howarth of Leigh & Orange architectural firm was hired to design the building while the interior was entrusted to Don Ashton, a Hollywood Art Director for such films as The Bridge on the River Kwai, Indiscreet, and Billy Budd. The Mandarin officially opened for business in October 1963, and at 26 storeys, it was the tallest building in Hong Kong. In addition to its record-setting height, the hotel was the first in Hong Kong to have direct dial phones and the first in Asia to include a bath in every guestroom. The hotel quickly drew recognition for its service and elegance, and back in 1967 was listed by Fortune magazine as one of eleven great hotels in the world.

-- Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong, by Wikipedia

Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok is a five-star hotel in Bangkok owned in part and managed by Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group. Located on the banks of the Chao Phraya River, the original structure was the first hotel built in Thailand when it opened as The Oriental in 1876. Today, the hotel is one of two flagship properties of Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group.

Germaine Krull

At the end of the war a six-person partnership each contributed US$250 to buy the hotel, badly run down from its wartime service. The partnership consisted of Germaine Krull (1897–1985), Prince Bhanu, General Chai Prateepasen, Pote Sarasin (prominent businessman and lawyer) and John Webster and Jim Thompson, two Americans who had served in the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) and who had stayed on in Thailand. Krull took the position of manager in 1947, despite no prior experience in the hotel field. Born in Germany, she had been best known as a photographer during the 1920s before service in the Pacific as a war correspondent for Agence France Presse. The hotel's restoration and restocking offered Thompson an opportunity to put to use his architectural and artistic abilities.

The hotel reopened for business on 12 June 1947. Krull turned out to be a natural hotelier and during her reign restored the hotel to its position as the premier hotel in Thailand. Thompson soon left the partnership over a plan to build a new wing, though he stayed on in residence at the hotel for some time. To compete with popular clubs and a new local bar called Chez Eve, Krull established the Bamboo Bar, which soon became one of the leading bars in Bangkok.[6]

In 1958 the ten-storey Garden Wing was built. It featured the city’s first elevator and was home to the Le Normandie Restaurant.[2] In 1967, fearful that Thailand would fall to the communists, Krull sold her share to Italthai which at the time was well on its way to becoming one of the country’s most significant mercantile groups eventually totally some 60 companies involved in almost all aspects of the Thai economy....

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok

-- Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, Wikipedia

Cornelius Vander Starr also known as Neil Starr or C. V. Starr (October 15, 1892 – December 20, 1968) was an American businessman and operative of the Office of Strategic Services, the predecessor of the CIA, who was best known for founding, in 1919, C.V. Starr & Co. (later known as Starr Companies) in Shanghai, China. Starr's "hand-picked successor" was Maurice Greenberg, who took a lead role in forming AIG as a Starr subsidiary. AIG grew from an initial market value of $300 million to $180 billion, becoming the largest insurance company in the world.

-- Cornelius Vander Starr, by Wikipedia

ACC is headquartered in New York City with regional offices and affiliate foundations in Hong Kong (ACC Hong Kong Foundation est. 2015), Manila (ACC Philippines Foundation est. 2000), Taipei (ACC Taiwan Foundation est. 1995) and Tokyo (ACC Japan Foundation est. 2018).


The Asian Cultural Program of the JDR 3rd Fund (1963-1980)

The JDR 3rd Fund was incorporated in 1963 as a private non-profit by John D. Rockefeller 3rd "to stimulate, encourage, promote, and support activities important to human welfare." [4] The Asian Cultural Program of the JDR 3rd Fund—precursor to the Asian Cultural Council—was established to promote cultural exchange in the arts between the United States and Asia. ACC’s founding director, Porter McCray, was the former director of circulating exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.[5]Through the 1960s, the Asian Cultural Program of the JDR 3rd Fund made 80 to 100 grants annually to artists, scholars, students and institutions. Richard S. Lanier succeeded Porter McCray as director in 1975. [6]

Archives concerning the JDR 3rd Fund, the Asian Cultural Program, and the Asian Cultural Council can be found at the Rockefeller Archive Center. [7]

The Asian Cultural Council (1980-)

Following the death of John D. Rockefeller 3rd in 1978, the Asian Cultural Program became the Asian Cultural Council (ACC) and was established as a publicly supported operating foundation. Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller, wife of John D. Rockefeller 3rd, became ACC’s first Chairman and Elizabeth J. McCormack, Director of the Rockefeller Philanthropy Office, became Vice President. Subsequent directors were Ralph Samuelson (1991-2008) and Jennifer P. Goodale (2008-2013), and ACC's current Executive Director is Miho Walsh.


• Chairman: Wendy O’Neill
• Executive Director: Miho Walsh[8]
• ACC Hong Kong Foundation Limited Chairman: Hans Michael Jebsen
• ACC Taiwan Foundation Chairman: Douglas Tong Hsu
• ACC Japan Foundation Chairman: Kazuko Aso
• ACC Philippines Foundation Inc. Chairman: Ernest L. Escaler


ACC Grantee, Japanese contemporary artist Takashi Murakami at Versailles Sept. 2010

ACC provides grants for individual fellowships, projects and organizations, graduate studies, and travel. They support activities that involve cultural immersion; cross-cultural engagement; and relationship building, collaboration, or exchange of best practices among arts professionals.[9]In addition to funding, it is common for grantees to receive mentoring and personal introductions, and access to an international network of alumni.

ACC provides grants from Asia to the U.S., U.S. to Asia, and intra-Asia. Regions include: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, and United States of America.

Fields include: Archaeology, Architecture, Art History, Arts Administration, Arts Criticism, Conservation, Crafts, Curation, Dance, Ethnomusicology, Film/Video/Photography, Literature, Museum Studies, Music, Theater and Visual Art.

In addition to grants, ACC organizes public programs to facilitate understanding and dialogue around cultural exchange. This includes forums, convenings, and officially established programs such as the East-West Dialogues and Cultural Conversations. In 2000 and 2003, ACC organized Forums on Arts and Culture in the Mekong Region with funding from the Rockefeller Foundation, and in 2017, the ACC Forum: Making the Case for Cultural Exchange through funding by the Henry Luce Foundation.

The East-West Dialogues is an annual lecture series engaging leaders from the arts and cultural fields in Asia and the West. It was established in 2013 through an endowment gift from Tsuneko and Shoji Sadao. Speakers have included author Pico Iyer, writer and editor Ian Buruma, American theater director Peter Sellars, Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki, and president of Japan Society of Boston Peter Grilli.

Cultural Conversations is an in-house lecture series that features ACC alumni and their work. Conversations have been led by alumni such as wooden boat builder Douglas Brooks (ACC multiple grants 2008-2017), Shiro Nakane and the Japan Society (ACC multiple grants 1964-2015), artist Oscar Oiwa (ACC 2001), shamisen performer Hidejiro Honjo (ACC 2016), Taiwanese choreographer Cheng Tsung-Lung (ACC 2011), [10], composer Matt Welch (ACC 2016), and scholar Urmila Mohan (ACC 2018).[11]

Program Timeline

Below is a list of ACC programs. Those established through an initial donation, grant, or endowment have funding individuals or organizations noted in parentheses.

1983: ACC Japan-United States Program (Seiji Tsutsumi and the Seibu Saison group)

• Ford Foundation Fellowship Program for individuals documenting and preserving the traditional arts of Asia (Ford Foundation)
• Starr Foundation Visual Arts Program for artists and art specialists from Asia to travel to the United States (Starr Foundation)

1984: Samuel H. Kress Foundation Fellowships for American art history students conducting dissertation research in Asia (Samuel H. Kress Foundation)

1985: The Humanities Fellowship Program for American scholars and students carrying out research in Asia (National Endowment for the Humanities)

1986: The Hong Kong Arts Program—now called the China, Hong Kong and Macau Program—for artists, students and scholars from Hong Kong to research, study and create work in the United States (Asian Oceanic Group, British American Tobacco Company (Hong Kong) Limited and the Lee Hysan Foundation)

1987: The Asian Art and Religion Fellowship Program for American scholars, specialists and artists to undertake research and projects in Asia involving the intersection or religion and the arts (Laurance S. Rockefeller Jr.)

1993: The Indonesian Museum Development Program—organized in collaboration with the Nusantara Jaya Foundation and the Indonesia Directorate of Museums—for Indonesian museum professionals to intern in the United States and to help with museum workshop programs in Indonesia (Ford Foundation)


• The Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Fellowship Fund Committee was organized in Japan to establish an endowment honoring the memory of the late Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller
• ACC Residency Program in Asia for American scholars, artists, and professionals to research, teach, and partake in residencies in Asia (Freeman Foundation)


• ACC’s Taiwan Fellowship Program for the exchange of artists, scholars, and specialists between Taiwan and the United States, as well as Taiwan and other countries in Asia (Sino-American Foundation, now the ACC Taiwan Foundation)
• China On-Site Seminar Program for the exchange of American and Chinese art history students (Henry Luce Foundation)
• Ock Rang Cultural Foundation Fellowship Program for cultural exchange between Korea and the U.S. and Korea and other countries in Asia


• The Cambodian Artists Mentorship Program to support performing arts training programs at the Royal University of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh (Rockefeller Foundation)
• The Indonesia Cultural Management Assistance Project to support the management of cultural institutions in Indonesia (Ford Foundation)


• The Philippines Fellowship Program for the exchange of artists, scholars, and specialists between the Philippines and the U.S., and the Philippines and other countries in Asia (ACC Philippines Foundation)

2001: The Mekong Region Fellowship Program to assist individual artists, scholars, and specialists from Burma, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam, and China’s Yunnan Province to undertake research, training and creative projects in the United States or Asia (Rockefeller Foundation)

2005: The Mandarin Oriental Fellowship to support the preservation of indigenous arts, cultures, and traditions of Asia (Mandarin Oriental Foundation)

2007: American Artists and Museum Professionals Program (Henry Luce Foundation)

2008: The Starr Foundation Performing Arts Program for individuals and institutions working in the contemporary performing arts in Asia to travel to the United States (The Starr Foundation)

2011: Arts in Action Program to support arts communities in need of assistance for rebuilding after natural disasters (Mikimoto)

2012: The Elizabeth J. McCormack Fund was established as an endowment to support the general operations of ACC

2019: The ACC/BCAF Contemporary Arts Fellowship Program for exchange of artists from China and the United States (Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation)

John D. Rockefeller 3rd Award

The John D. Rockefeller 3rd Award is given to individuals from Asia or the U.S. who have made significant contributions to the international understanding, practice, or study of the visual or performing arts of Asia.[12]

Past awardees

• 1970: Richard Bartholomew, New Delhi, India
• 1986: John M. Rosenfield, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Professor of Fine Arts, Harvard University
• 1987: José Maceda, Chairman, Department of Music, Research College of Music, University of the Philippines
• 1988: James R. Brandon, Professor, Department of Drama and Theatre, University of Hawai’i at Manoa
• 1990: Sherman E. Lee, Former Director, The Cleveland Museum of Art
• 1991: Chou Wen-chung, Director, Center for U.S.-China Arts Exchange, Columbia University
• 1992: Kapila Vatsyayan, Director, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi
• 1993: Donald Richie, Film critic and writer, Tokyo
• 1995: Setsu Asakura, Stage designer, Tokyo
• 1996: Ma Chengyuan, Director, Shanghai Museum
• 1997: Beate Gordon, Arts consultant and writer, New York
• 1998: Nguyen Van Huy, Director, Vietnam Museum of Ethnology, Hanoi
• 1999: Proeung Chhieng, Dean, Faculty of Choreographic Arts, Royal University of Fine Arts, Phnom Penh
• 2000: Ellen Stewart, Founder and Artistic Director, La MaMa Experimental Theater Club, New York
• 2002: Yang Meiqi, Founder, Guangdong Modern Dance Company, Guangzhou
• 2003: Judy Mitoma, Director, Center for Intercultural Performance, University of California, Los Angeles
• 2005: Mella Jaarsma, Nindityo Adipurnomo, Founders, Cemeti Art House, Yogyakarta
• 2006: Lin Hwai-min, Artistic Director, Cloud Gate Dance Theater, Taipei
• 2007: Nestor O. Jardin, President, Cultural Center of the Philippines, Manila
• 2008: Ratan Thiyam, Founder and Director, Chorus Repertory Theatre, Manipur
• 2010: Samina Quraeshi, Writer, Artist, Designer, Shepard/Quraeshi Associates, Inc., Boston
• 2013: Amna Kusumo, Director, Yayasan Kelola, Jakarta
• 2013: Pichet Klunchun, Choreographer and Dancer, Phichet Klunchun Dance Company, Thailand
• 2013: Chinary Ung, Composer, Composers Institute in Asia; University of California, San Diego
• 2015: Duk-Hyung Yoo, President, Seoul Institute of the Arts, Seoul
• 2017: Shen Wei, Founder, Shen Wei Dance Arts
• 2019: Kengo Kuma, Architect, Kengo Kuma & Associates

Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Award

The Asian Cultural Council established the Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Award in 2009 in honor of its first Chairman, Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller, wife of John D. Rockefeller 3rd. The Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Award honors the generosity of the enlightened individuals who believe ACC’s mission of furthering international dialogue, understanding, and respect between Asia and the U.S. through the transformative experience of cultural exchange.

Past awardees

• 2009: Dr. Deanna Ruth Tak Yung Rudgard, OBE, Non-executive Director, Hysan Development Company Limited
• 2012: Seiji Tsutsumi, President, The Saison Foundation
• 2018: Hans Michael Jebsen, Chairman, Jebsen & Co. Ltd., ACCHK Chairman
• 2019: Elizabeth J. McCormack, Chairman Emeritus, Asian Cultural Council

Artistic Advisory Council

ACC Grantee, American film and theater director and writer Julie Taymor

• Yael Buencamino (Philippines)
• Cai Guo-Qiang, Visual Art (ACC 1995 & 2006, China/U.S.)
• Tiffany Chung, Visual Art (ACC 2015, U.S./Vietnam)
• Patrick Flores, Museum Studies (ACC 2009, Philippines)
• Oscar Ho, Visual Art (ACC 1992, Hong Kong)
• David Henry Hwang, Theater (ACC 2012, U.S.)
• Jin Xing, Dance (ACC 1988, China)
• Kengo Kuma, Architecture (ACC 1985, Japan)
• Dinh Q. Le, Visual Art (ACC 2004, Vietnam/U.S.)
• Barbara London, Film, Video, and Photography (ACC 1995 & 1997, U.S.)
• Fumihiko Maki, Architecture (ACC 1976, Japan)
• Meredith Monk, Theater (ACC 1997 & 2000, U.S.)
• Kohei Nawa, Visual Art (ACC 2004, Japan)
• Jan Leeroy New, Visual Art (ACC 2015, Philippines)
• Viet Thanh Nguyen, Film, Video, and Photography (ACC 2010, U.S.)
• Ong Keng Sen, Theater (ACC 1993, Singapore)
• Mallika Sarabhai, Arts General (ACC 2002, India)
• Sheu Fang-Yi, Dance (ACC 2006, Taiwan)
• Louisa So Yuk Wa, Theater (ACC 2008, Hong Kong)
• Julie Taymor, Theater (ACC 1980, U.S.)
• Tran Luong, Visual Art (ACC 1998 & 2008, Vietnam)
• Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Film, Video, and Photography (ACC 2004, Thailand)
• Robert Wilson, Theater (ACC 1981 & 2004, U.S.)


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Rockefeller Brothers Fund
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/5/20

Rockefeller Brothers Fund
Motto: Philanthropy for an Interdependent World
Formation: 28 December 1940; 79 years ago
Founder: John, Nelson, Winthrop, Laurance, and David Rockefeller
Headquarters: New York, New York
Products: Grant-making
Key people: Stephen B. Heintz
Endowment: $870 million (2017)[1]

The Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF) is a philanthropic foundation created and run by members of the Rockefeller family. It was founded in New York City in 1940 as the primary philanthropic vehicle for the five third-generation Rockefeller brothers: John D. Rockefeller III, Nelson, Laurance, Winthrop and David. It is distinct from the Rockefeller Foundation. The Rockefellers are an industrial, political, and banking family that made one of the world's largest fortunes in the oil business during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The Fund's stated mission is to "advance social change that contributes to a more just, sustainable, and peaceful world."[2] The current president of RBF is Stephen Heintz, who was appointed to the post in 2000.[3] Valerie Rockefeller serves as RBF's chairwoman. She succeeded Richard Rockefeller, the fifth child of David Rockefeller, who served as RBF's chairman until 2013.[4]


The Rockefeller Brothers Fund was established in 1940 by the five sons of John D. Rockefeller, Jr. The five Rockefeller brothers served as the Fund's first five trustees. In 1951, the Fund grew substantially when it received a $58 million endowment from John D. Rockefeller, Jr.[5]

As the RBF's founding generation passed on, new family members joined the board, moving the Fund's giving further to the political left.[6] In 1999, the Fund merged with the Charles E. Culpeper Foundation.[5]

In November 2006, David Rockefeller pledged $225 million to the Fund that would create the David Rockefeller Global Development Fund after his death.[7]

In September 2014, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund announced that it planned to divest its assets from fossil fuels.[8] On disinvesting from fossil fuels, the president of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Stephen Heintz, said: "We see this as both a moral imperative and an economic opportunity" (30 September 2014).[9]

The Rockefeller Family Fund and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund are independent, distinct institutions.[10]

Special Studies Project

Main article: Special Studies Project

From 1956 to 1960, the Fund financed a study conceived by its then president, Nelson Rockefeller, to analyze the challenges facing the United States. Henry Kissinger was recruited to direct the project. Seven panels were constituted that looked at issues including military strategy, foreign policy, international economic strategy, governmental reorganization, and the nuclear arms race.[11]

The military subpanel's report was rush-released about two months after the USSR launched Sputnik in October 1957.[12] Rockefeller urged the Republican Party to adopt the finding of the Special Studies Project as its platform. The findings of the project formed the framework of Nelson Rockefeller's 1960 presidential election platform.[13] The project was published in its entirety in 1961 as Prospect for America: The Rockefeller Panel Reports. The archival study papers are stored in the Rockefeller Archive Center at the family estate.[14]


• Nelson Rockefeller (1956-1958)
• Laurance Rockefeller (1958-1968)
• Dana S. Creel (1968-1975)
• William M. Dietel (1975-1987)
• Colin G. Campbell (1987-2000)
• Stephen B. Heintz (2001–present)

Further reading

• Harr, John Ensor, and Peter J. Johnson, The Rockefeller Century: Three Generations of America's Greatest Family, New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1988.
• Nielsen, Waldemar, The Big Foundations, New York: Cambridge University Press, 1973.
• Rockefeller, David, Memoirs, New York: Random House, 2002.


1. "Endowment Summary". Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
2. "About The Fund". Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
3. Nauffts, Mitch (5 November 2000). "Stephen B. Heintz: A Conversation With the President of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund". Philanthropy News Digest. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
4. "New Leadership at the Fund". 29 July 2013. Retrieved 24 October 2017.
5. Jump up to:a b Ciger, Joseph Charles. Philanthropists and Foundation Globalization. Transaction Publishers. p. 101. ISBN 9781412806732.
6. Horowitz, David; Laskin, Jacob. The New Leviathan: How the Left-Wing Money-Machine Shapes American Politics and Threatens America's Future. Crown Publishing Group. p. 45. ISBN 9780307716477.
7. "David Rockefeller Pledges $225 Million to Family Fund (Update1)". Retrieved 2 October 2015.
8. Iyengar, Rishi (22 September 2014). "The Rockefellers Are Pulling Their Charity Fund Out of Fossil Fuels". Time. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
9. Cited in Tim Flannery, Atmosphere of Hope. Solutions to the Climate Crisis, Penguin Books, 2015, pages 117 (ISBN 9780141981048). Opening quote for the chapter ten entitles "Divestment and the carbon bubble".
10. Kaiser, David; Wasserman, Lee (8 December 2016). "The Rockefeller Family Fund vs. Exxon". The New York Review of Books. Retrieved 27 February 2018. Although the boards of the Rockefeller Family Fund and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund are still led by members of the family, they are independent, distinct institutions. In these articles we are speaking only for the Rockefeller Family Fund
11. Ferguson, Niall (2015). Kissinger 1923-1968: The Idealist. Penguin. ISBN 9780698195691.
12. Rushed release of military subpanel's report - see Cary Reich, The Life of Nelson A. Rockefeller: Worlds to Conquer, 1908-1958, New York: Doubleday, 1996. (pp.650-667)
13. Andrew III, John (Summer 1998). "Cracks in the Consensus: The Rockefeller Brothers Fund Special Studies Project and Eisenhower's America". Presidential Studies Quarterly. 28: 535–552. JSTOR 27551900.
14. Rockefeller Archive Center

External links

• Official website
Site Admin
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Wed May 06, 2020 6:11 am

Aspen Institute
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/5/20

The Aspen Institute
Formation: 1949; 71 years ago
Type: Research institute, think tank
Headquarters: 2300 N Street, NW, Suite 700
Location: Washington, D.C.
President & CEO: Daniel R. Porterfield
Revenue (2017): $141.378 million[1]
Expenses (2017): $134.993 million[1]

The Aspen Institute is an international nonprofit think tank founded in 1949 as the Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies.[2] The organization is a nonpartisan forum for values-based leadership and the exchange of ideas. The Institute and its international partners promote the pursuit of common ground and deeper understanding in a nonpartisan and nonideological setting through regular seminars, policy programs, conferences, and leadership development initiatives. The institute is headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States, and has campuses in Aspen, Colorado (its original home), and near the shores of the Chesapeake Bay at the Wye River in Maryland. It has partner Aspen Institutes in Berlin, Rome, Madrid, Paris, Lyon, Tokyo, New Delhi, Prague, Bucharest, Mexico City, and Kiev, as well as leadership initiatives in the United States and on the African continent, India, and Central America.

The Aspen Institute is largely funded by foundations such as the Carnegie Corporation, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the Gates Foundation, the Lumina Foundation, and the Ford Foundation, by seminar fees, and by individual donations. Its board of trustees includes leaders from politics, government, business and academia who also contribute to its support.


The Institute was largely the creation of Walter Paepcke, a Chicago businessman who had become inspired by the Great Books program of Mortimer Adler at the University of Chicago.[3] In 1945, Paepcke visited Bauhaus artist and architect Herbert Bayer, AIA, who had designed and built a Bauhaus-inspired minimalist home outside the decaying former mining town of Aspen, in the Roaring Fork Valley. Paepcke and Bayer envisioned a place where artists, leaders, thinkers, and musicians could gather. Shortly thereafter, while passing through Aspen on a hunting expedition, oil industry maverick Robert O. Anderson (soon to be founder and CEO of Atlantic Richfield) met with Bayer and shared in Paepcke's and Bayer's vision. In 1949, Paepcke organized a 20-day international celebration for the 200th birthday of German poet and philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The celebration attracted over 2,000 attendees, including Albert Schweitzer, José Ortega y Gasset, Thornton Wilder, and Arthur Rubinstein.[4]

Doerr-Hosier Center at the Aspen Institute in Aspen, Colorado

In 1949, Paepcke founded the Aspen Institute; and later the Aspen Music Festival and eventually (with Bayer and Anderson) the International Design Conference at Aspen (IDCA).[5] Paepcke sought a forum "where the human spirit can flourish", especially amid the whirlwind and chaos of modernization. He hoped that the Institute could help business leaders recapture what he called "eternal verities": the values that guided them intellectually, ethically, and spiritually as they led their companies. Inspired by philosopher Mortimer Adler's Great Books seminar at the University of Chicago, Paepcke worked with Anderson to create the Aspen Institute Executive Seminar.[6] In 1951, the Institute sponsored a national photography conference attended by Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, Ben Shahn, Berenice Abbott, and other notables. During the 1960s and 1970s, the Institute added organizations, programs, and conferences, including the Aspen Center for Physics, the Aspen Strategy Group, Communications and Society Program and other programs that concentrated on education, communications, justice, Asian thought, science, technology, the environment, and international affairs.

In 1979, through a donation by Corning Glass industrialist and philanthropist Arthur A. Houghton Jr. the Institute acquired a 1,000-acre (4 km²) campus on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, known today as the Wye River Conference Centers.[7]

In 1996, the first Socrates Program seminar was hosted.

In 2005, it held the first Aspen Ideas Festival, featuring leading minds from around the world sharing and speaking on global issues. The Institute, along with The Atlantic, hosts the festival annually. It has trained philanthropists such as Carrie Morgridge.[8]

Since 2013,[9] the Aspen Institute together with U.S. magazine The Atlantic and Bloomberg Philanthropies has participated in organizing the annual CityLab event, a summit dedicated to develop strategies for the challenges of urbanization in today's cities.[10]

Walter Isaacson was the president and CEO of Aspen Institute from 2003 to June 2018. Isaacson announced in March 2017 that he would step down as president and CEO at the end of the year.[11] On November 30, 2017, Daniel Porterfield was announced as his successor. Porterfield succeeded Isaacson on June 1, 2018.[12]


1. "Annual Report 2017" (PDF). Aspen Institute. 31 December 2017. Retrieved 22 August 2019.
2. "About the Aspen Institute". Retrieved 31 March 2018.
3. "About - The Aspen Institute". Retrieved 18 October 2016.
4. "Elizabeth Paepcke, 91, a Force In Turning Aspen Into a Resort". The New York Times. 18 June 1994. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
5. "Herbert Bayer, 85, a designer and artist of Bauhaus School". The New York Times. 1 October 1985. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
6. "ASPEN: A 4TH DECADE FOR ANCESTOR...OF A GROWING BUSINESS BREED". The New York Times. 31 August 1981. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
7. "Cuban boy moves to Md. Shore". The Baltimore Sun. 26 April 2000. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
8. Davidson, Joanne (June 17, 2015). "Need a few million dollars, 10,000 digital whiteboards or a shipment of sheep hearts? Don't ask for them". The Denver Post. Retrieved August 15, 2016.
9. "CityLab: Urban Solutions to Global Challenges". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2017-10-04.
10. "CityLab 2016". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2017-10-04.
11. "Walter Isaacson to leave Aspen Institute, become Tulane professor". Retrieved 2017-05-30.
12. Platts, Barbara. "Daniel R. Porterfield named Aspen Institute's next president and CEO". Retrieved 2017-11-30.

External links

• Official website
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Wed May 06, 2020 7:00 am

Carnegie Corporation of New York
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/5/20

Carnegie Corporation of New York
The Corporation's headquarters at 437 Madison Avenue in New York
Formation: 9 June 1911; 108 years ago
Founder: Andrew Carnegie
Type: Foundation
Legal status: Nonprofit organization
Purpose: To promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding
Headquarters: New York, United States
Region: Global
Methods: Grant-giving
Fields: Education, democracy, international peace, higher education in Africa
President: Vartan Gregorian
Chair of the Board: Thomas Kean
Revenue (2018): $253 million[1]
Expenses (2018): $180 million[1]
Endowment (2018): $3.5 billion[1]

The Carnegie Corporation of New York MHL is a philanthropic fund established by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to support education programs across the United States, and later the world.[2] Carnegie Corporation has endowed or otherwise helped to establish institutions that include the United States National Research Council, what was then the Russian Research Center at Harvard University (now known as the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies),[3] the Carnegie libraries and the Children's Television Workshop. It also for many years generously funded Carnegie's other philanthropic organizations, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP), the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching (CFAT), and the Carnegie Institution for Science (CIS).


Founding and early years

By 1911 Andrew Carnegie had endowed five organizations in the US and three in the United Kingdom, and given more than $43 million to build public libraries and given another almost $110 million elsewhere. But ten years after he sold the Carnegie Steel Company, more than $150 million remained in his accounts and at 76, he wearied of philanthropic choices. Long-time friend Elihu Root suggested he establish a trust. Carnegie transferred most of his remaining fortune into it, and made the trust responsible for distributing his wealth after he died. Carnegie's previous charitable giving had used conventional organizational structures, but he chose a corporation as the structure for his last and largest trust. Chartered by the State of New York as the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the corporation's capital fund, originally worth about $135 million, had a market value of $1.55 billion on March 31, 1999.

In 1911-1912, Carnegie gave the corporation $125 million. At that time the corporation was the largest single philanthropic charitable trust ever established. He also made it a residual legatee under his will so it therefore received an additional $10 million, the remainder of his estate after had paid his other bequests. Carnegie reserved a portion of the corporation's assets for philanthropy in Canada and the then-British Colonies, an allocation first referred to as the Special Fund, then the British Dominions and Colonies Fund, and later the Commonwealth Program. Charter amendments have allowed the corporation to use 7.4 percent of its income in countries that are or once were members of the British Commonwealth.[clarification needed]

In its early years Carnegie served as both president and trustee. His private secretary James Bertram and his financial agent, Robert A. Franks, acted as trustees as well and, respectively, corporation secretary and treasurer. This first executive committee made most of the funding decisions. Other seats on the board were held ex officio by presidents of five previously-established US Carnegie organizations:

• Carnegie Institute (of Pittsburgh) (1896),
• Carnegie Institution of Washington (1902),
• Carnegie Hero Fund Commission (1904),
• Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching (CFAT) (1905),
• Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP) (1910).

After Carnegie died in 1919, the trustees elected a full-time salaried president as the trust's chief executive officer and ex officio trustee. For a time the corporation's gifts followed the patterns Carnegie had already established. Grants for public libraries and church organs continued until 1917, and also went to other Carnegie organizations, and universities, colleges, schools, and educational agencies. Carnegie's letter of gift to the original trustees making the endowment said that the trustees would "best conform to my wishes by using their own judgement."[4] Corporation strategies changed over the years but remained focused on education, although the trust did also increasingly fund scientific research, convinced that the nation needed more scientific expertise and "scientific management". It also worked to build research facilities for the natural and social sciences. The corporation made large grants to the National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council, the Carnegie Institution of Washington, the National Bureau of Economic Research, Stanford University's now-defunct Food Research Institute[5] and the Brookings Institution, then became interested in adult education and lifelong learning, an obvious follow-on to Carnegie's vision for libraries as "the university of the people". In 1919 it initiated the Americanization Study to explore educational opportunities for adults, primarily for new immigrants.

Frederick P. Keppel

With Frederick P. Keppel as president (1923-1941), the Carnegie Corporation shifted from creating public libraries to strengthening library infrastructure and services, developing adult education, and adding arts education to the programs of colleges and universities. The foundation's grants in this period have a certain eclectic quality and remarkable perseverance in its chosen causes.[6]

Keppel initiated a famous 1944 study of race relations in the United States by the Swedish social economist Gunnar Myrdal in 1937 by naming a non-American outsider as manager of the study. His theory that this task should be done by someone unencumbered by traditional attitudes or earlier conclusions led to Myrdal's widely heralded book American Dilemma (1944). The book had no immediate effect on public policy, but was later much cited in legal challenges to segregation. Keppel believed foundations should make facts available and let them facts speak for themselves. His cogent writings on philanthropy made a lasting impression on field and influenced the organization and leadership of many new foundations.[7]

In 1927 Keppel toured sub-Saharan Africa and recommended a first set of grants to establish public schools in eastern and southern Africa. Other grants went to for municipal library development in South Africa. During 1928 the corporation initiated the Carnegie Commission on the Poor White Problem in South Africa. Better known as the "Carnegie Poor White Study", it promoted strategies to improve the lives of rural Afrikaner whites and other poor whites in general. A memorandum sent to Keppel said there was "little doubt that if the natives were given full economic opportunity, the more competent among them would soon outstrip the less competent whites"[8] Keppel endorsed the project that produced the report, motivated by his concern with maintaining existing racial boundaries.[8] The corporation's concern for the so-called "poor white problem" in South Africa stemmed at least in part from similar misgivings about poor whites in the American South.[8]

White poverty defied traditional understandings of white racial superiority and thus became the subject of study. The report recommended that "employment sanctuaries" be established for poor white workers and that poor white workers replace "native" workers in most skilled aspects of the economy.[9] The authors of the report suggested that white racial deterioration and miscegenation would be the outcome[8] unless something was done to help poor whites, endorsing the necessity of the role of social institutions to play in the successful maintenance of white racial superiority.[9][10] The report expressed trepidation concerning the loss of white racial pride, with the implicit consequence that poor whites would not successfully resist "Africanisation."[8] The report sought, in part, to forestall the historically inevitable accession of a communal, class based, democratic socialist movement aimed at uniting the poor of each race in common cause and brotherhood.[11]

Charles Dollard

World War II and its immediate aftermath were a relatively inactive period for the Carnegie Corporation. Charles Dollard had joined the staff in 1939 as Keppel's assistant and became president in 1948. The foundation took greater interest in the social sciences, and particularly the study of human behavior. The trust also entered into international affairs. Dollard urged it to fund quantitative, "objective" social science research like research in physical sciences, and help to diffuse the results through major universities. The corporation advocated for standardized testing in schools to determine academic merit regardless of the student's socio-economic background. Its initiatives have also included helping to broker the creation of the Educational Testing Service in 1947.

The corporation determined that the US increasingly needed policy and scholarly expertise in international affairs, and so tied into area studies programs at colleges and universities as well as the Ford Foundation. In 1948 the trust also provided the seed money to establish the Russian Research Center at Harvard University, today known as the Davis Center for Russia and Eurasian Studies,[12] as an organization that could address large-scale research from both a policy and educational points of view.

In 1951 the Group Areas Act took effect in South Africa and effectively put the apartheid system into place, leading to political ascendancy for Afrikaners and dispossession for many Africans and colored people suddenly required to live in certain areas of the country only, on pain of imprisonment for remaining in possession of homes in areas designated for whites. The Carnegie corporation pulled its philanthropic endeavors from South Africa for more than two decades after this political change, turning its attention from South Africa to developing East African and West African universities instead.

John Gardner

John W. Gardner was promoted from a staff position to the presidency in 1955. Gardner simultaneously became president of the CFAT, which was housed at the corporation. During Gardner's time in office the Carnegie Corporation worked to upgrade academic competence in foreign area studies and strengthened its liberal arts education program. In the early 1960s it inaugurated a continuing education program and funded development of new models for advanced and professional study by mature women. Important funding went to the key early experiments in continuing education for women, with major grants to the University of Minnesota (1960, co-directors Elizabeth L. Cless and Virginia L. Senders), Radcliffe College (1961, under President Mary Bunting), and Sarah Lawrence College (1962, under Professor Esther Raushenbush).[13] Gardner's interest in leadership development led to the White House Fellows program in 1964.

Notable grant projects in higher education in sub-Saharan Africa include the 1959-60 Ashby Commission study of Nigerian needs in postsecondary education. This study stimulated aid increases from the United Kingdom, Europe, and the United States to African nations' systems of higher and professional education. Gardner had a strong interest in education, but as a psychologist he believed in the behavioral sciences and urged the corporation to funded much of the US' basic research on cognition, creativity, and the learning process, particularly among young children, associating psychology and education. Perhaps its most important contribution to reform of pre-college education at this time was the series of education studies done by James B. Conant, former president of Harvard University; in particular, Conant's study of comprehensive American high schools (1959) resolved public controversy concerning the purpose of public secondary education, and made the case that schools could adequately educate both average students and the academically gifted.

Under Gardner, the corporation embraced strategic philanthropy—planned, organized, and deliberately constructed to attain stated ends. Funding criteria no longer required just a socially desirable project. The corporation sought out projects that would produce knowledge leading to useful results, communicated to decision-makers, the public, and the media, in order to foster policy debate. Developing programs that larger organizations, especially governments, could implement and scale in size became a major objective. The policy shift to institutional knowledge transfer came in part as a response to relatively diminished resources that made it necessary to leverage assets and "multiplier effects" to have any effect at all. The corporation considered itself a trendsetter in philanthropy, often funding research or providing seed money for ideas while others financed more costly operations. For example, ideas it advanced resulted in the National Assessment of Educational Progress, later adopted by the federal government. A foundation's most precious asset was its sense of direction, Gardner said,[14] gathering a competent professional staff of generalists that he called his "cabinet of strategy," and regarded as a resource as important to the corporation as its endowment.

Alan Pifer

While Gardner's opinion of educational equality was to multiply the channels through which an individual could pursue opportunity, it was during the term of long-time staff member Alan Pifer, who became acting president during 1965 and president during 1967 (again of both Carnegie Corporation and the CFAT), that the foundation began to respond to claims by various groups, including women, for increased power and wealth. The corporation developed three interlocking objectives: prevention of educational disadvantage; equality of educational opportunity in the schools; and broadened opportunities in higher education. A fourth objective cutting across these programs was to improve the democratic performance of government. Grants were made to reform state government as the laboratories of democracy, underwrite voter education drives, and mobilize youth to vote, among other measures. Use of the legal system became a method for achieving equal opportunity in education, as well as redress of grievance, and the corporation joined the Ford and Rockefeller foundations and others in funding educational litigation by civil rights organizations. It also initiated a multifaceted program to train black lawyers in the South for the practice of public interest law and to increase the legal representation of black people.

Maintaining its commitment to early childhood education, the corporation endorsed the application of research knowledge in experimental and demonstration programs, which subsequently provided strong evidence of the long-term positive effects of high-quality early education, particularly for the disadvantaged. A 1980 report on an influential study, the Perry Preschool Project of the HighScope Educational Research Foundation, on the outcomes for sixteen-year-olds enrolled in the experimental preschool programs provided crucial evidence that safeguarded Project Head Start in a time of deep cuts to federal social programs. The foundation also promoted educational children's television and initiated the Children's Television Workshop, producer of Sesame Street and other noted children's programs. Growing belief in the power of educational television prompted creation of the Carnegie Commission on Educational Television, whose recommendations were adopted into the Public Broadcasting Act of 1968 that established a public broadcasting system. Many other reports on US education the corporation financed at this time, included Charles E. Silberman's acclaimed Crisis in the Classroom (1971), and the controversial Inequality: A Reassessment of the Effect of Family and Schooling in America by Christopher Jencks (1973). This report confirmed quantitative research, e.g. the Coleman Report, showed that in public schools resources only weakly correlated with educational outcomes, which coincided with the foundation's burgeoning interest in improved school effectiveness.

Becoming involved with South Africa again during the mid-1970s, the corporation worked through universities to increase the legal representation of black people and increase the practice of public interest law. At the University of Cape Town, it established the Second Carnegie Inquiry into Poverty and Development in Southern Africa, this time to examine the legacies of apartheid and make recommendations to nongovernmental organizations for actions commensurate with the long-run goal of achieving a democratic, interracial society.

The influx of nontraditional students and "baby boomers" into higher education prompted formation of the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education (1967), funded by the CFAT. (During 1972, the CFAT became an independent institution after experiencing three decades of restricted control over its own affairs.) In its more than ninety reports, the commission made detailed suggestions for introducing more flexibility into the structure and financing of higher education. One outgrowth of the commission's work was creation of the federal Pell grants program offering tuition assistance for needy college students. The corporation promoted the Doctor of Arts "teaching" degree as well as various off-campus undergraduate degree programs, including the Regents Degree of the State of New York and Empire State College. The foundation's combined interest in testing and higher education resulted in establishment of a national system of college credit by examination (College-Level Entrance Examination Program of the College Entrance Examination Board). Building on its past programs to promote the continuing education of women, the foundation made a series of grants for the advancement of women in academic life. Two other study groups formed to examine critical problems in American life were the Carnegie Council on Children (1972) and the Carnegie Commission on the Future of Public Broadcasting (1977), the latter formed almost ten years after the first commission.

David A. Hamburg

David A. Hamburg, a physician, educator, and scientist with a public health background, became president in 1982 intending to mobilize the best scientific and scholarly talent and thinking on "prevention of rotten outcomes" - from early childhood to international relations. The corporation pivoted from higher education to the education and healthy development of children and adolescents, and the preparation of youth for a scientific and technological, knowledge-driven world. In 1984 the corporation established the Carnegie Commission on Education and the Economy. Its major publication, A Nation Prepared (1986), reaffirmed the role of the teacher as the "best hope" for quality in elementary and secondary education. That report led to the establishment a year later of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, to consider ways to attract able candidates to teaching and recognize and retain them. At the corporation's initiative, the American Association for the Advancement of Science issued two reports, Science for All Americans (1989) and Benchmarks for Science Literacy (1993), which recommended a common core of learning in science, mathematics, and technology for all citizens and helped set national standards of achievement.

A new emphasis for the corporation was the danger to world peace posed by the superpower confrontation and weapons of mass destruction. The foundation underwrote scientific study of the feasibility of the proposed federal Strategic Defense Initiative and joined the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation to support the analytic work of a new generation of arms control and nuclear nonproliferation experts. After the end of the USSR, corporation grants helped promote the concept of cooperative security among erstwhile adversaries and projects to build democratic institutions in the former Soviet Union and Central Europe. The Prevention of Proliferation Task Force, coordinated by a grant to the Brookings Institution, inspired the Nunn-Lugar Amendment to the Soviet Threat Reduction Act of 1991, intended to help dismantle Soviet nuclear weapons and reduce proliferation risks. More recently, the corporation addressed interethnic and regional conflict and funded projects seeking to diminish the risks of a wider war resulting from civil strife. Two Carnegie commissions, Reducing the Nuclear Danger (1990), the other Preventing Deadly Conflict (1994), addressed the dangers of human conflict and the use of weapons of mass destruction. The corporation's emphasis in Commonwealth Africa, meanwhile, shifted to women's health and political development and the application of science and technology, including new information systems, to foster research and expertise in indigenous scientific institutions and universities.

During Hamburg's tenure, dissemination achieved even greater primacy with respect to strategic philanthropy. Consolidation and diffusion of the best available knowledge from social science and education research was used to improve social policy and practice, as partner with major institutions with the capability to influence public thought and action. If "change agent" was a major term during Pifer's time, "linkage" became a byword in Hamburg's. The corporation increasingly used its convening powers to bring together experts across disciplinary and sectoral boundaries to create policy consensus and promote collaboration.

Continuing tradition, the foundation established several other major study groups, often directed by the president and managed by a special staff. Three groups covered the educational and developmental needs of children and youth from birth to age fifteen: the Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development (1986), the Carnegie Task Force on Meeting the Needs of Young Children (1991), and the Carnegie Task Force on Learning in the Primary Grades (1994). Another, the Carnegie Commission on Science, Technology, and Government (1988), recommended ways that government at all levels could make more effective use of science and technology in their operations and policies. Jointly with the Rockefeller Foundation, the corporation financed the National Commission on Teaching & America's Future, whose report, What Matters Most (1996), provided a framework and agenda for teacher education reform across the country. These study groups drew on knowledge generated by grant programs and inspired follow-up grantmaking to implement their recommendations.

Vartan Gregorian

During the presidency of Vartan Gregorian the corporation reviewed its management structure and grants programs. In 1998 the corporation established four primary program headings: education, international peace and security, international development, and democracy. In these four main areas, the corporation continued to engage with major issues confronting higher education. Domestically, it emphasized reform of teacher education and examined the current status and future of liberal arts education in the United States. Abroad, the corporation sought to devise methods to strengthen higher education and public libraries in Commonwealth Africa. As a cross-program initiative, and in cooperation with other foundations and organizations, the corporation instituted a scholars program, offering funding to individual scholars, particularly in the social sciences and humanities, in the independent states of the former Soviet Union.


• Honorary-Member of the Order of Liberty, Portugal (5 April 2018)[15]

See also

• Carnegie Commission on the Poor White Problem in South Africa
• Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland
• Carnegie library
• Andrew Carnegie
• Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs
• Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
• The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
• Nicholas Murray Butler


1. "Annual Report 2018" (PDF). Carnegie Corporation of New York. Carnegie Corporation of New York. 2019. Retrieved April 11, 2019.
2. Carnegie Corporation of New York
3. "Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies". Kathryn W. and Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University. Harvard University. 2017. Retrieved October 29, 2018.
4. Gary Mulholland; Claire MacEachen; Ilias Kapareliotis (2013). Charles Wankel, Ph.D.; Larry E. Pate (eds.). Rise, Fall, Re-Emergence of Social Enterprise. Social Entrepreneurship as a Catalyst for Social Change: Research in Management Education and Development. Information Age Press. p. 53. ISBN 978-1623964474.
5. "Food Research Institute". Stanford University.
6. Richard Glotzer, "A long shadow: Frederick P. Keppel, the Carnegie Corporation and the Dominions and Colonies Fund Area Experts 1923–1943." History of Education 38.5 (2009): 621-648.
7. Walter Jackson, "The Making of a Social Science Classic: Gunnar Myrdal's An American Dilemma." Perspectives in American History 2 (1985): 221-67.
8. The Silent War: Imperialism and the Changing Perception of Race By Frank Füredi. Page 66-67. ISBN 0-8135-2612-4
9. Haunted by Empire: Geographies of Intimacy in North American History By Ann Laura Stoler. Page 66. ISBN 0-8223-3724-X
10. Racially segregated school libraries in KwaZulu/Natal, South Africa by Jennifer Verbeek. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, Vol. 18, No. 1, 23-46 (1986)
11. The American Century: Consensus and Coercion in the Projection of American Power By David Slater and Peter James Taylor. Page 290. ISBN 0-631-21222-1, 1999
12. "History". Kathryn W. and Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University. Harvard University.
13. Elizabeth L. Cless, "The Birth of an Idea: An Account of the Genesis of Women's Continuing Education," in Helen S. Astin (ed.), Some Action of Her Own: The Adult Woman and Higher Education, Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1976, pp.6-7.
14. Ellen Condliffe Lagemann (1992). The Politics of Knowledge: The Carnegie Corporation, Philanthropy, and Public Policy. University of Chicago Press. p. 183. ISBN 0226467805 – via Google Books.
15. "Cidadãos Estrangeiros Agraciados com Ordens Portuguesas". Página Oficial das Ordens Honoríficas Portuguesas. Retrieved March 20, 2019.

Further reading

• Sara L. Engelhardt (ed.), The Carnegie Trusts and Institutions. New York: Carnegie Corporation of New York, 1981.
• Ellen C. Lagemann, The Politics of Knowledge. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 1989.
• Inderjeet Parmar, Foundations of the American Century: The Ford, Carnegie, and Rockefeller Foundations in the Rise of American Power. New York: Columbia University Press, 2012.
• Patricia L Rosenfield, "A world of giving : Carnegie Corporation of New York-- a Century of International Philanthropy." New York : PublicAffairs, 2014.

External links

• Carnegie Corporation of New York
• History of the Carnegie Corporation
• Carnegie Corporation of New York archives at Columbia University
• Time For Ford Foundation & CFR To Divest? Collaboration of the Rockefeller, Ford and Carnegie Foundations with the Council on Foreign Relations
Site Admin
Posts: 30801
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Wed May 06, 2020 7:25 am

World Economic Forum
by Wikipedia
Accessed: 5/6/20

World Economic Forum
Headquarters in Cologny, Switzerland.
Motto: Committed to improving the state of the world
Formation: January 1971; 49 years ago (as European Management Forum)
Founder: Klaus Schwab
Type: Nonprofit organization
Legal status: Foundation
Purpose: International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation
Headquarters: Cologny, Switzerland
Region served: Worldwide
Official language: English
Executive Chairman: Klaus Schwab
Website: Edit this at Wikidata
Formerly called: European Management Forum

The World Economic Forum (WEF), based in Cologny-Geneva, Switzerland, is an NGO, founded in 1971. The WEF's mission is cited as "committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas".[1] It is a membership-based organization, and membership is made up of the world's largest corporations.[2]

The WEF hosts an annual meeting at the end of January in Davos, a mountain resort in Graubünden, in the eastern Alps region of Switzerland. The meeting brings together some 3,000 business leaders, international political leaders, economists, celebrities and journalists for up to five days to discuss global issues, across 500 public and private sessions.

The organization also convenes some six to eight regional meetings each year in locations across Africa, East Asia, Latin America, and India and holds two further annual meetings in China and the United Arab Emirates. Beside meetings, the organization provides a platform for leaders from all stakeholder groups from around the world – business, government and civil society – to collaborate on multiple projects and initiatives.[3] It also produces a series of reports and engages its members in sector-specific initiatives.[4]


Professor Klaus Schwab opens the inaugural European Management Forum in Davos in 1971.

F. W. de Klerk and Nelson Mandela shake hands at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum held in Davos in January 1992

Naoto Kan, then Japanese prime minister gives a special message at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2011

Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman, World Economic Forum

The economics expert Prime-Minister Meles Zenawi, being a panelist at World Economic Forum on 2012.

The WEF was founded in 1971 by Klaus Schwab, a business professor at the University of Geneva.[5] First named the European Management Forum, it changed its name to the World Economic Forum in 1987 and sought to broaden its vision to include providing a platform for resolving international conflicts.

In the summer of 1971, Schwab invited 444 executives from Western European firms to the first European Management Symposium held in the Davos Congress Centre under the patronage of the European Commission and European industrial associations, where Schwab sought to introduce European firms to American management practices. He then founded the WEF as a nonprofit organization based in Geneva and drew European business leaders to Davos for the annual meetings each January.[6]

Events in 1973, including the collapse of the Bretton Woods fixed-exchange rate mechanism and the Arab–Israeli War, saw the annual meeting expand its focus from management to economic and social issues, and, for the first time, political leaders were invited to the annual meeting in January 1974.[7]

Political leaders soon began to use the annual meeting as venue for promoting their interests. The Davos Declaration was signed in 1988 by Greece and Turkey, helping them turn back from the brink of war. In 1992, South African President F. W. de Klerk met with Nelson Mandela and Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi at the annual meeting, their first joint appearance outside South Africa. At the 1994 annual meeting, Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and PLO chairman Yasser Arafat reached a draft agreement on Gaza and Jericho.[8]

In late 2015, the invitation was extended to include a North Korean delegation for the 2016 WEF, "in view of positive signs coming out of the country", the WEF organizers noted. North Korea has not been attending the WEF since 1998. The invitation was accepted but after the January 2016 North Korean nuclear test on 6 January, the invitation was revoked, and the country's delegation was made subject to "existing and possible forthcoming sanctions".[9] Despite protests by North Korea calling the decision by the WEF managing board a "sudden and irresponsible" move, the WEF committee maintained the exclusion because "under these circumstances there would be no opportunity for international dialogue".[10]

In 2017, the WEF in Davos attracted considerable attention when for the first time, a head of state from the People's Republic of China was present at the alpine resort. With the backdrop of Brexit, an incoming protectionist US administration and significant pressures on free trade zones and trade agreements, Paramount leader Xi Jinping defended the global economic scheme, and portrayed China as a responsible nation and a leader for environmental causes. He sharply rebuked the current populist movements that would introduce tariffs and hinder global commerce, warning that such protectionism could foster isolation and reduced economic opportunity.[11]

In 2018, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave the plenary speech, becoming the first head of state from India to deliver the inaugural keynote for the annual meet at Davos. Modi highlighted global warming (climate change), terrorism and protectionism as the three major global challenges, and expressed confidence that they can be tackled with collective effort.[12]

In 2019, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro gave the keynote address at the plenary session of the conference. On his first international trip to Davos, he emphasized liberal economic policies despite his populist agenda, and attempted to reassure the world that Brazil is a protector of the rain forest while utilizing its resources for food production and export. He stated that "his government will seek to better integrate Brazil into the world by mainstreaming international best practices, such as those adopted and promoted by the OECD".[13] Environmental concerns like extreme weather events, and the failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation were among the top-ranking global risks expressed by WEF attendees.[14]


Headquartered in Cologny, the WEF also has offices in New York, Beijing and Tokyo. In January 2015 it was designated an NGO with "other international body" status by the Swiss Federal Government under the Swiss Host-State Act.[15]

On October 10, 2016, the WEF announced the opening of its new Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution in San Francisco. According to the WEF, the center will "serve as a platform for interaction, insight and impact on the scientific and technological changes that are changing the way we live, work and relate to one another".[16]

The World Economic Forum claims to be impartial and that it is not tied to any political, partisan, or national interests. Until 2012, it had observer status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council, when it was revoked; it is under the supervision of the Swiss Federal Council. The foundation's highest governance body is the foundation board.[17]

The WEF is chaired by Founder and Executive Chairman Professor Klaus Schwab and is guided by a Board of Trustees that is made up of leaders from business, politics, academia and civil society. Members of the Board of Trustees include: Mukesh Ambani, Marc Benioff, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, Mark Carney, Laurence D. Fink, Chrystia Freeland, Orit Gadiesh, Fabiola Gianotti, Al Gore, Herman Gref, Angel Gurría, André Hoffmann, Christine Lagarde, Jack Ma, Yo-Yo Ma, Peter Maurer, Luis Alberto Moreno, Muriel Pénicaud, H.M. Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, L. Rafael Reif, David M. Rubenstein, Mark Schneider, Klaus Schwab, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Jim Hagemann Snabe, Feike Sijbesma, Heizo Takenaka, Zhu Min.[18]

The Managing Board is chaired by the WEF's President, Børge Brende, and acts as the executive body of the World Economic Forum. Managing Board members are Emma Benameur, Børge Brende, Julien Gattoni, W. Lee Howell, Jeremy Jurgens, Anil Menon, Adrian Monck, Sarita Nayyar, Richard Samans, Olivier M. Schwab, Murat Sönmez, Dominic Kailash Nath Waughray, Saadia Zahidi, Alois Zwinggi.[19]

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan at the World Economic Forum in 2009.


The foundation is funded by its 1,000 member companies, typically global enterprises with more than five billion dollars in turnover (varying by industry and region). These enterprises rank among the top companies within their industry and/or country and play a leading role in shaping the future of their industry and/or region. Membership is stratified by the level of engagement with forum activities, with the level of membership fees increasing as participation in meetings, projects, and initiatives rises.[20] In 2011 an annual membership cost $52,000 for an individual member, $263,000 for "Industry Partner" and $527,000 for "Strategic Partner". An admission fee cost $19,000 per person.[21] In 2014, WEF raised annual fees by 20 percent, bringing the cost for "Strategic Partner" from CHF 500,000 ($523,000) to CHF 600,000 ($628,000).[22]


Annual meeting in Davos

A sports shop has turned into a temporary informal reception location "Caspian week", WEF 2018.

The flagship event of the World Economic Forum is the invitation-only annual meeting held at the end of January in Davos, Switzerland, bringing together chief executive officers from its 1,000 member companies, as well as selected politicians, representatives from academia, NGOs, religious leaders, and the media in an alpine environment. The winter discussions ostensibly focus around key issues of global concern (such as the globalization, capital markets, wealth management, international conflicts, environmental problems and their possible solutions).[4][23] The participants are also taking part in role playing events, such as the Investment Heat Map.[24] Informal winter meetings may have led to as many ideas and solutions as the official sessions.[25]

At the 2018 annual meeting, more than 3,000 participants from nearly 110 countries participated in over 400 sessions. Participation included more than 340 public figures, including more than 70 heads of state and government and 45 heads of international organizations; 230 media representatives and almost 40 cultural leaders were represented.[26]

As many as 500 journalists from online, print, radio, and television take part, with access to all sessions in the official program, some of which are also webcast.[27] Not all the journalists are given access to all areas, however. This is reserved for white badge holders. "Davos runs an almost caste-like system of badges", according to BBC journalist Anthony Reuben. "A white badge means you're one of the delegates – you might be the chief executive of a company or the leader of a country (although that would also get you a little holographic sticker to add to your badge), or a senior journalist. An orange badge means you're just a run-of-the-mill working journalist."[28]

All plenary debates from the annual meeting also are available on YouTube,[29] with photographs at Flickr,[30][31]

Annual meeting in Davos

Year / Dates / Theme

1988 / -- / The new state of the world economy
1989 / -- / Key developments in the 90s: implications for global business
1990 / -- / Competitive cooperation in a decade of turbulence
1991 / -- / The new direction for global leadership
1992 / -- / Global cooperation and megacompetition
1993 / -- / Rallying all the forces for global recovery
1994 / -- / Redefining the basic assumptions of the world economy
1995 / -- / Leadership for challenges beyond growth
1996 / -- / Sustaining globalization
1997 / -- / Building the network society
1998 / -- / Managing volatility and priorities for the 21st century
1999 / -- / Responsible globality: managing the impact of globalization
2000 / -- / New beginnings: making a difference
2001 / 25–30 January / Sustaining growth and bridging the divides: a framework for our global future
2002 / 31 January – 4 February / Leadership in fragile times
2003 / 21–25 January / Building trust
2004 / 21–25 January / Partnering for security and prosperity
2005 / 26–30 January / Taking responsibility for tough choices
2006 / 25–29 January / The creative imperative[32]
2007 / 24–28 January / Shaping the global agenda, the shifting power equation
2008 / 23–27 January / The power of collaborative innovation
2009 / 28 January – 1 February / Shaping the post-crisis world
2010 / 27–30 January / Improve the state of the world: rethink, redesign, rebuild
2011 / 26–30 January / Shared norms for the new reality
2012 / 25–29 January / The great transformation: shaping new models
2013 / 23–27 January / Resilient dynamism[33]
2014 / 22–25 January / The reshaping of the world: consequences for society, politics and business
2015 / 21–24 January / New global context
2016 / 20–23 January / Mastering the fourth industrial revolution
2017 / 17–20 January / Responsive and responsible leadership
2018 / 23–26 January / Creating a shared future in a fractured world
2019 / 22–25 January / Globalization 4.0: shaping a global architecture in the age of the fourth industrial revolution
2020 / 20–24 January / Stakeholders for a cohesive and sustainable world[34]


Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia, at the 2010 World Economic Forum

In 2011, some 250 public figures (heads of state or government, cabinet ministers, ambassadors, heads or senior officials of international organizations) attended the annual meeting, including: Felipe Calderón, Robert B. Zoellick, Álvaro Uribe Vélez, Nicolas Sarkozy, Ban Ki-moon, Angela Merkel, Oommen Chandy, N. Chandrababu Naidu, Ferenc Gyurcsány, François Fillon, Morgan Tsvangirai, Gordon Brown, David Cameron, Min Zhu, Paul Kagame, Queen Rania of Jordan, Dmitry Medvedev, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, Kevin Rudd, Barney Frank, Kofi Annan, Werner Faymann, Leonel Fernández, Jacob Zuma, Cyril Ramaphosa Naoto Kan, Jean-Claude Trichet, and Zeng Peiyan.[35]

Al Gore, Bill Clinton, Bill Gates, Orrin Hatch, Victor Dzau, Georg von Krogh,[36] Bono, Paulo Coelho, and Tony Blair also are regular Davos attendees. Past attendees include George Soros, Michael Bloomberg, Charles Butt, Robert Bass, Donald Trump, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Henry Kissinger, Nelson Mandela, Raymond Barre, Julian Lloyd Webber, Sandro Salsano, Wences Casares, Imran Khan, Sadhguru.

Summer annual meeting

Wang Jianlin, Chairman of the Dalian Wanda Group, at the 2009 Annual Meeting of the New Champions in Dalian

In 2007, the foundation established the Annual Meeting of the New Champions (also called Summer Davos), held annually in China, alternating between Dalian and Tianjin, bringing together 1,500 participants from what the foundation calls Global Growth Companies, primarily from rapidly growing emerging countries such as China, India, Russia, Mexico, and Brazil, but also including quickly growing companies from developed countries. The meeting also engages with the next generation of global leaders from fast-growing regions and competitive cities, as well as technology pioneers from around the globe.[37][38] The Premier of China has delivered a plenary address at each annual meeting.

Regional meetings

Prithviraj Chavan, Chief Minister of Maharashtra, India; Sudha Pilay, Member-Secretary, Planning Commission, India; and Ben Verwaayen, chief executive officer, Alcatel-Lucent, France were the co-chairs of the India Economic Summit 2011 in Mumbai

Felipe Calderón, President of Mexico, speaking during Latin America Broadens Its Horizons, a session at the 2007 annual meeting of the World Economic Forum

Every year regional meetings take place, enabling close contact among corporate business leaders, local government leaders, and NGOs. Meetings are held in Africa, East Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. The mix of hosting countries varies from year to year, but consistently China and India have hosted throughout the decade since 2000.[39]

Young Global Leaders

The group of Young Global Leaders[40] consists of 800 people chosen by the WEF organizers as being representative of contemporary leadership, "coming from all regions of the world and representing all stakeholders in society", according to the organization. After five years of participation they are considered alumni.

Social Entrepreneurs

Since 2000, the WEF has been promoting models developed by those in close collaboration with the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship,[41] highlighting social entrepreneurship as a key element to advance societies and address social problems.[42][43] Selected social entrepreneurs are invited to participate in the foundation's regional meetings and the annual meetings where they may meet chief executives and senior government officials. At the Annual Meeting 2003, for example, Jeroo Billimoria met with Roberto Blois, deputy secretary-general of the International Telecommunication Union, an encounter that produced a key partnership for her organization Child helpline international.[44]

Research reports

Two Academy Award winner, Pakistani journalist Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy at WEF in 2013

The foundation also acts as a think tank, publishing a wide range of reports. In particular, "Strategic Insight Teams" focus on producing reports of relevance in the fields of competitiveness, global risks, and scenario thinking.

Filipino businessman Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala at WEF in 2009

The "Competitiveness Team"[45] produces a range of annual economic reports (first published in brackets): the Global Competitiveness Report (1979) measured competitiveness of countries and economies; The Global Information Technology Report (2001) assessed their competitiveness based on their IT readiness; the Global Gender Gap Report examined critical areas of inequality between men and women; the Global Risks Report (2006) assessed key global risks; the Global Travel and Tourism Report (2007) measured travel and tourism competitiveness; the Financial Development Report (2008)[46] aimed to provide a comprehensive means for countries to establish benchmarks for various aspects of their financial systems and establish priorities for improvement; and the Global Enabling Trade Report (2008) presented a cross-country analysis of the large number of measures facilitating trade among nations.[47]

The "Risk Response Network"[48] produces a yearly report assessing risks which are deemed to be within the scope of these teams, have cross-industry relevance, are uncertain, have the potential to cause upwards of US$10 billion in economic damage, have the potential to cause major human suffering, and which require a multi-stakeholder approach for mitigation.[49]



The Global Health Initiative was launched by Kofi Annan at the annual meeting in 2002. The GHI's mission was to engage businesses in public-private partnerships to tackle HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and health systems.

Mohammad Khatami at Economic Forum in 2004

The Global Education Initiative (GEI), launched during the annual meeting in 2003, brought together international IT companies and governments in Jordan, Egypt, and India[50] that has resulted in new personal computer hardware being available in their classrooms and more local teachers trained in e-learning. The GEI model, which is scalable and sustainable, now is being used as an educational blueprint in other countries including Rwanda.

On 19 January 2017 the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), a global initiative to fight epidemics, was launched at WEF in Davos. The internationally funded initiative aims at securing vaccine supplies for global emergencies and pandemics, and to research new vaccines for tropical diseases, that are now more menacing. The project is funded by private and governmental donors, with an initial investment of US$460m from the governments of Germany, Japan and Norway, plus the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wellcome Trust.[51]


The Water Initiative brings together diverse stakeholders such as Alcan Inc., the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, USAID India, UNDP India, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Government of Rajasthan, and the NEPAD Business Foundation to develop public-private partnerships on water management in South Africa and India.

In an effort to combat corruption, the Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI) was launched by CEOs from the Engineering and Construction, Energy and Metals, and Mining industries at the annual meeting in Davos during January 2004. PACI is a platform for peer exchange on practical experience and dilemma situations. Approximately 140 companies have joined the initiative.[52]


Further information: Business action on climate change

In the beginning of the 21th century the forum begun to increasingly deal with environmental issues[53]. In the Davos Manifesto 2020 it is said that a company among other: "acts as a steward of the environmental and material universe for future generations. It consciously protects our biosphere and champions a circular, shared and regenerative economy." "responsibly manages near-term, medium-term and long-term value creation in pursuit of sustainable shareholder returns that do not sacrifice the future for the present." "is more than an economic unit generating wealth. It fulfils human and societal aspirations as part of the broader social system. Performance must be measured not only on the return to shareholders, but also on how it achieves its environmental, social and good governance objectives."[54]

The Environmental Initiative covers climate change and water issues. Under the Gleneagles Dialogue on Climate Change, the U.K. government asked the World Economic Forum at the G8 Summit in Gleneagles in 2005 to facilitate a dialogue with the business community to develop recommendations for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This set of recommendations, endorsed by a global group of CEOs, was presented to leaders ahead of the G8 Summit in Toyako and Hokkaido held in July 2008.[55][56]

In January 2017, WEF launched the Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy (PACE), which is a global public private partnership seeking to scale circular economy innovations.[57][58] PACE is co-chaired by Frans van Houten (CEO of Philips), Naoko Ishii (CEO of the Global Environment Facility, and the head of UN Environment (UNEP).[59] The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, the International Resource Panel, Circle Economy and Accenture serve as knowledge partners.

The Environment and Natural Resource Security Initiative was emphasized for the 2017 meeting to achieve inclusive economic growth and sustainable practices for global industries. With increasing limitations on world trade through national interests and trade barriers, the WEF has moved towards a more sensitive and socially minded approach for global businesses with a focus on the reduction of carbon emissions in China and other large industrial nations.[60]

Also in 2017, WEF launched the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) for the Earth Initiative, a collaboration among WEF, Stanford University and PwC, and funded through the Mava Foundation.[61] In 2018, WEF announced that one project within this initiative was to be the Earth BioGenome Project, the aim of which is to sequence the genomes of every organism on Earth.[62]

The World Economic Forum is working to eliminate plastic pollution, stating that by the year 2050 it will consume 15% of the global carbon budget and will pass by its weight fishes in the world's oceans. One of the methods is to achieve circular economy[63][64].

The theme of 2020 World Economic Forum annual meeting was "Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World". Climate change and sustainability were central themes of discussion. Many argued that GDP is failed to represent correctly the wellbeing and that fossil fuel subsydies should be stopped. Many of the participants said that a better capitalism is needed. Al Gore summarized the ideas in the conference as: “I don’t want to be naive, but I want to acknowledge that the center of the global economy is now saying things that many of us have dreamed they might for a long time,” "“The version of capitalism we have today in our world must be reformed,”[65].

In this meeting the World Economic Forum:

• Launched the Trillion Tree Campaign an initiative aiming to "grow, restore and conserve 1 trillion trees around the world - in a bid to restore biodiversity and help fight climate change". Donald Trump joined the initiative. The forum stated that: "Nature-based solutions – locking-up carbon in the world’s forests, grasslands and wetlands – can provide up to one-third of the emissions reductions required by 2030 to meet the Paris Agreement targets," adding that the rest should come from the heavy industry, finance and transportation sectors. One of the targets is to unify existing reforestation projects[66]
• Discussed the issue of climate change and called to expanding renewable energy, energy efficiency change the patterns of consumption and remove carbon from the atmosphere. The forum claimed that the climate crisis will became a climate apocalypse if the temperature will rise by 2 degree. The forum called to fulfill the commitments in Paris Agreement. Jennifer Morgan the executive director of Greenpeace said that as to the beginning of the forum, fossil fuels still get 3 times more money than climate solutions[67]

Global Future Councils

The Network of Global Future Councils meets annually in the United Arab Emirates and virtually several times a year.[68] The second WEF annual meeting was held in Dubai in November 2017, when there were 35 distinct councils focused on a specific issue, industry or technology.[69] In 2017 members met with representatives and partners of WEF's new Center for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.[70] Ideas and proposals are taken forward for further discussion at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters in January.[69]


Protest march against the WEF in Basel, 2006.

During the late 1990s the foundation, along with the G7, World Bank, World Trade Organization, and International Monetary Fund, came under heavy criticism by anti-globalization activists who claimed that capitalism and globalization were increasing poverty and destroying the environment. Ten thousand demonstrators disrupted a regional meeting of the World Economic Forum in Melbourne, obstructing the path of two hundred delegates to the meeting.[71] Small demonstrations are held in Davos on most but not all years, organised by the local Green Party (see Anti-WEF protests in Switzerland, January 2003) to protest against what have been called the meetings of "fat cats in the snow", a tongue-in-cheek term used by rock singer Bono.[72]

After 2014, the protest movement against the World Economic Forum largely died down, and Swiss police noted a significant decline in attending protesters, 20 at most during the meeting in 2016. While protesters are still more numerous in large Swiss cities, the protest movement itself has undergone significant change.[73] Around 150 Tibetans and Uighurs protested in Geneva and 400 Tibetans in Bern against the visit of the China's paramount leader Xi Jinping for the 2017 meeting, with subsequent confrontations and arrests.[74]

Participation of NGOs

The WEF attracts a number of non-governmental organisations, including Greenpeace, the World Wildlife Fund, Amnesty International, and the ICRC.

Winnie Byanyima, the executive director of the anti-poverty confederation Oxfam International co-chaired the 2015 meeting, where she presented a critical report of global wealth distribution based on statistical research by the Credit Suisse Research Institute. In this study, the richest one percent of people in the world own forty-eight percent of the world's wealth.[75]

At the 2019 meeting, the Oxfam director presented another report claiming that the gap between rich and poor has only increased. The report “Public Good or Private Wealth” stated that 2,200 billionaires worldwide saw their wealth grow by 12 percent while the poorest half saw its wealth fall by 11 percent. Oxfam calls for a global tax overhaul to increase and harmonise global tax rates for corporations and wealthy individuals.[76]

Public cost of security

In September 2018, the city of Davos approved by popular vote to increase the security budget for the yearly meeting to CHF 1.125 million. Later that month, the Swiss house of representatives (Nationalrat) also agreed to increase police and military expenditures to CHF 39 million while the Kanton of Graubünden contributes CHF 2.25 million, the same amount the WEF is paying for security costs.[77]

Private vs public meetings

Since the annual meeting in January 2003 in Davos, an Open Forum Davos,[78] which was co-organized by the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches, is held concurrently with the Davos forum, opening up the debate about globalization to the general public. The Open Forum has been held in the local high school every year, featuring top politicians and business leaders. It is open to all members of the public free of charge.[79][80]

"Davos Man"

"Davos Man" is a neologism referring to the global elite of wealthy (predominantly) men, whose members view themselves as completely "international" and who despise the people of their own country, being loyal only to global capital itself. According to political scientist Samuel P. Huntington, who is credited with inventing the phrase "Davos Man",[81] they are people who "have little need for national loyalty, view national boundaries as obstacles that thankfully are vanishing, and see national governments as residues from the past whose only useful function is to facilitate the élite's global operations". In his 2004 article "Dead Souls: The Denationalization of the American Elite", Huntington argues that this international perspective is a minority elitist position not shared by the nationalist majority of the people.[82]

Gender debate

Since 2011, the World Economic Forum has been addressing its very own gender quota, to introduce at least one woman for every five senior executives that attended. Female participation increased from 9% to 15% between 2001 and 2005. In 2016, 18% of the WEF attendees were female; this number increased to 21% in 2017, and 24% in 2020, five years of growth.[83][84]

See also

• 2009 Davos incident
• Asian Leadership Conference
• Boao Forum for Asia
• Davos process
• European Business Summit
• International Labour Organization
• International Transport Forum
• Istanbul World Political Forum
• St. Petersburg International Economic Forum
• Sustainable development
• World Knowledge Forum


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• Bornstein, David (2007). How to Change the World – Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas. Oxford University Press (New York City). ISBN 978-0-19-533476-0. 358 pages.
• Kellerman, Barbara (1999). Reinventing Leadership – Making the Connection Between Politics and Business. State University of New York Press (Albany, New York). ISBN 978-0-7914-4071-1. 268 pages.
• Moore, Mike (2003). A World Without Walls – Freedom, Development, Free Trade and Global Governance. Cambridge University Press (Cambridge, England; New York City). ISBN 978-0-521-82701-0. 292 pages.
• Pigman, Geoffrey Allen (2007). The World Economic Forum – A Multi-Stakeholder Approach to Global Governance. Routledge (London, England; New York City). ISBN 978-0-415-70204-1. 175 pages.
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• Wolf, Michael (1999). The Entertainment Economy – How Mega-Media Forces Are Transforming Our Lives. Random House (New York City). ISBN 978-0-8129-3042-9. 336 pages.
• "Behind the Scenes at Davos" broadcast 14 February 2010 on 60 Minutes
• ´How to Open the World Economic Forum´ – Matthias Lüfkens in Interview with
• "Everybody’s Business: Strengthening International Cooperation in a More Interdependent World" launched May 2010, Doha, Qatar

External links

• Official website
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Re: Freda Bedi Cont'd (#2)

Postby admin » Wed May 06, 2020 7:40 am

Spirit and Nature: Why the Environment Is a Religious Issue
Edited by Steven C. Rockefeller and John C. Elder
by Stuart Smithers
FALL 1992

SPIRIT AND NATURE: Why the Environment Is a Religious Issue
Edited by Steven C. Rockefeller and John C. Elder.
Beacon Press: Boston, 1992.
226 pp. $30.00 (clothbound) $16.00 (paperback).

One of the most common and enduring stereotypes in environmental literature is the idea that Eastern religions promote a sense of harmony between human beings and nature. On the other side of the stereotype stand the religions of the West, promoting the separation of human beings and nature and encouraging acts of domination, exploitation, and control....

This image of an affirmative Eastern attitude toward nature must have lurked in the minds of the environmental activists and friends of the environment who gathered at Middlebury College in the fall of 1990 to hear the 14th Dalai Lama speak on the topic of "Spirit and Nature." Tibet, like traditional Japan, has been the focus of a certain Western yearning for the East as a place to discover not only a unique sense of wisdom (what one observer called "an intimate and creative relationship with the vast and profound secrets of the human soul") but a wisdom that can insure "the future survival of Earth itself."6 There was a hush in the Middlebury field house as the Dalai Lama seated himself on the stage and began to speak.7 It must have been a surprise when he began by saying that he had nothing to offer to those who came expecting to hear about ecology or the environment, and even more surprising when he interpreted the word "nature" as a reference to "the fundamental nature of all reality" and entered into a discourse on the Buddhist concept of Emptiness. To explain the connection between nature and Emptiness, he said: "When talking about the fundamental nature of reality, one could sum up the entire understanding of that nature in a simple verse: 'Form is emptiness and emptiness is form' (The Heart Sutra). This simple line sums up the Buddhist understanding of the fundamental nature of reality."8 And he went on to explain how Tibetan philosophers use logical analysis to develop their view of Emptiness and to pursue what he said was the "expressed aim of Buddhism," namely, the purification and development of the mind.

The Dalai Lama's words were surprising not because he seemed unfriendly toward the "natural" world in the prevailing sense of the word (that is, toward ecosystems of plants, animals, the atmosphere, the ocean, rivers, mountains and so on), but because he so gently and easily shifted attention away from the natural world toward the development of human nature and the purification of the mind. The sense of surprise only became more acute when he began to develop the concept of Emptiness and indicated that it involved a denial of the reality of what he took to be "nature" itself. To say that "Form is Emptiness and Emptiness is Form," in the language of Mahayana philosophy, is to say that all things are "empty" of any inherent "nature" or identity.9 The purification of the mind, which the Dalai Lama called the "expressed aim of Buddhism," comes from stripping away false concepts of the "nature" of things and resting content with their Emptiness. In other words, "nature" (in one possible meaning of the word) may very well be a barrier to overcome in a quest for human development.

What should we make of the gap between the Dalai Lama's words and the conventional image of the Buddhist attitude toward nature? Does the Dali Lama see something in the Buddhist tradition that others do not? Is the image of Buddhism as an ecologically friendly tradition simply an artifact of the Western imagination?

-- Is There a Buddhist Philosophy of Nature?, by Malcolm David Eckel

Driving toward Seattle in bumper-to-bumper traffic, I am faced again with a certain despair for the environment and myself. Here I am rushing to Seattle past urban sprawl and “industrial parks” (a wonderful oxymoron) in a truck that con­sumes far more energy than is necessary, pondering the conse­quences of our ugly “progress”­ only to realize I have arrived at these same observations, conclu­sions, and sentiments before. I have begun to recognize a familiar feeling that life is moving in circles, that for all the politically correct talk about the environ­ment, the charters, and the summits, nothing really changes for the better, and just identifying environmental and ecological problems is no longer important. The next far more difficult step must be to question how these problems can be corrected and to admit that many of the proposals already put forward have failed; not because the ideas were wrong, but because advocates have not appreciated the need for a more sophisticated understanding of human nature in relationship to the environmental crisis. Spirit and Nature, edited by Steven C. Rockefeller and John Elder, is an important new direction in envi­ronmental discourse because it squarely faces the question of reli­gious force, both personal and institutional, as a prime player in the politics of environment.

The text contains the lectures and addresses of a four-day symposium entitled “Spirit and Nature: Religion, Ethics, and Environmental Crisis,” which was held at Middlebury College (where both Rockefeller and Elder are professors) in the fall of 1990. The symposium presented Buddhist, Islamic, Christian, Jewish, and Native American religious perspectives.

Every chapter in Spirit and Nature sounds a note that could be lengthened, shortened, or tuned in some way; and while each voice is intelligent and caring and unique, several recurring themes and questions emerge.

In different ways many of the authors have arrived at the central importance of “interdependence” as a primary principle for under­standing ecological reality and for the actions which proceed from such an understanding. This notion is hardly unfamiliar to Buddhists and is included in the Dalai Lama’s remarks (“A Tibetan Buddhist Perspective”) at the symposium. According to the Buddhist view of “interdepen­dence,” our lives are propelled by craving or desire, and that fact has not been overlooked by other traditions. Ismar Schorsch (“Learning to Live with Less: A Jewish Perspective”), for example, laments our lack of self-restraint and the “ferocious consumerism of American life,” while Sallie McFague (“A Square in the Quilt”) alludes to the same dilemma in her discussion of St. Augustine’s understanding of sin as “living a lie”:

… living in false relations to God and other beings. It [sin] is, as he said in a term that may sound quaint and anachronistic but which is ecologically up-to-date, “concupiscence,” an insatiable appetite …

Recognizing this fact of human nature (desire, the force of desire, and its many subtle and uncon­scious layers of manifestation) must lead to important questions about the challenge we face as the Western “lifestyle” of consumerism spreads across the globe: should we expect rational discourse to prevail against non­rational forces, especially the non­rational forces of consumerism, which is nothing more than a meaningless economics of desire?

The full danger of consumerist societies and our inability to convert societies to a more envi­ronmentally sound lifestyle is only weakly represented in Spirit and Nature because, I think, the book is one-sided. While I consider myself to be very much on the same side, I wonder how useful it is to talk to oneself, as it were. Ronald Engel (“Liberal Democ­racy and the Fate of the Earth”) seems to be approaching this point when he writes: “We need to pause for a moment and listen to the two sides of this debate.”

Spirit and Nature is undoubt­edly a successful book because it makes us return to the primary issues of the environmental move­ment and ask, What next? One very real possibility introduced in Spirit and Nature is to convene another conference that would include “the other”: that is, intelligent and successful people in busi­ness, politics, science, and technol­ogy who do not share the point of view of the authors and editors. Listening to “the other,” I might gain a new respect for the incredi­ble forces that resist restraint, forces which—even though I am in sympathy with ecology and conservation movements—I find echoes of in myself: a certain lazi­ness, a refusal to give up a life of luxury (like the luxury of driving alone to Seattle) for the Spartan life advocated by Socrates or even Zen Master Dogen.

Professor Schorsch discusses his use of pen and paper for writ­ing as a way of resisting mecha­nization. But one wonders if his secretary did not process his words on a computer. This type of small contradiction is also a part of human nature, and the inability to see such contradic­tions certainly is a part of human nature and the resistance to change. It would be helpful to meet with “the other,” especially if one came to realize that “the other” exists, in some form, in all of us and that “the other” might offer some unanticipated oppor­tunities for change.

Nevertheless, the intriguing religious orientation offered in Spirit and Nature suggests that the environmental crisis exists not because we have forgotten the world, but because we have forgotten ourselves. In one of the most demanding chapters, Seyyed Hossein Nasr (“Islam and the Environmental Crisis”) describes us as a “humanity in rebellion against both heaven and earth,” and concludes that:

The solution of the environmental crisis can come about only when the modern spiritual malaise is cured and there is a rediscovery of the world of the Spirit, which, being compassionate, always gives Itself to those open and receptive to Its vivifying rays.

And yet if one does believe that a “spiritual sense” is a necessary prerequisite to an enlightened ecoview, then perhaps the environmental crisis is even worse than previously thought. One might even argue that to view the environmental crisis as a spiritual issue or from a spiritual point of view only reflects the pitifully low ebb of “Spirit” in our general culture. As the Dalai Lama noted:

Taking care of the planet is nothing special, nothing sacred or holy. It’s just like taking care of your house. We have no other planet, no other house, except this one….We cannot go to any other planet. If the moon is seen from a distance, it appears quite beautiful. But if we go there to stay, I think, it would be horrible. So, our blue planet is much happier. Therefore, we have to take care of our own place. This is not something special or holy. This is just a practical fact!

Stuart Smithers is assistant professor of South Asian Religions at the University of Puget Sound.
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