Institute for Sustainable Development


Our Sustainable Future - CSU, Chico

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This Way to Sustainability Conference XIV
Transition to Sustain
March 28-29, 2019


We are now accepting conference proposals for March 2019 via our web page
Click here to submit yours by the deadline of October 31, 2018
You can see some of our previous conference presentation recordings on our website archives page

The Institute for Sustainable Development and the Associated Students of CSU, Chico would like to welcome you to our 14th annual This Way to Sustainability Conference. As we continue to confront new global socioeconomic and environmental challenge, this conference represents a time to reflect on and explore innovative ideas, grounded in sustainable development principles, which can help guide us through the uncertainties of our shared future. We encourage you to join in open conversation, learn from each other, and build new friendships and professional associations. During these two days, we will explore collaborative and interdisciplinary solutions to unsustainable practices; to that end, we have organized cross-disciplinary conference tracks, investigating the interface between environmental, cultural, economic, and social concerns. We look forward to hearing the perspectives you bring to our shared hopes and vision for a sustainable future.

This year's included topics with some examples on subject matter for discussion:

Climate Impacts & Solutions

Climate Impacts icon

    • Cause and effects of climate change
      • Catastrophic events increasing in severity and frequency
        • Hurricanes of 2017, wildfires of 2018, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, Red Tide outbreak, and more...
    • How to assess climate impacts and plan adaptation strategies for resilience
    • Solutions ~ how can we link climate change knowledge with potential implementation strategies


Community Partnerships & Action

community partner icon

    • How can we as a community take meaningful, deliberate, collective action to remedy the impact of problems in our community?
    • Public Safety
      • Self Sufficiency
      • Citizen Engagement
      • Addressing Homelessness
      • Emergency Preparedness
    • Resilient Cities Initiative


Educating for Resilience

education icon

    • What combination or knowledge and skills are most critical to providing future generations with capacity to address a constantly changing and dynamic world?
    • How and in what ways can engaging students in community activities and research enhance resilience?
    • How can we educate people to prepare for catastrophic events?
      • Survival skills, emergency preparedness, etc.
      • Alternatives for daily needs and luxuries
      • Lifestyle options ~ mobile living, tiny communities, shelter accessibility, creating defensible space, etc.


Energy and the Environment

energy icon

    • What will a carbon-neutral energy future look like, and how can we get there?
    • What roles do conservation and energy efficiency play in this future, and what are the associated technological and behavioral needs?

Food & Agriculture

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    • How water availability and temperature changes  affect our current level of food supplies
    • Economic impacts and their consequences
    • How changes in food access affect individuals and communities health
    • The role of food security in community vitality; social, environmental, ethical, and economic factors
    • Agricultural methods available to mitigate these challenges
    • Food preservation and preparation


Infrastructure and Transportation

infrastructure transportation icon

    • How can communities prepare for climate-related impacts on their infrastructure and transportation dependent commerce
    • How can we alter commerce and commute patterns to reduce climate impacts?
    • How do we create more livable, resilient communities?


Laws, Policies and Business laws policy business icon

    • How might we reform our laws and policies so that we don't run ourselves out of business in America?
    • How do current laws and policies influence or economic vitality?
    • How can we prepare future generations for jobs in California?
    • How can we influence laws and policies to secure jobs and natural resources long term?


Lifestyles, Health & Wellness lifestyles icon

    • To what extent and how are health and wellness correlated to vibrant communities?
    • New innovations and ideas
    • What individual, social, cultural, and other factors enhance or inhibit a community’s resilience?
    • What community services are most critical to ensuring livability?
    • Necessity vs. luxury, how can we get more out of less? Maturing past materialism.


Human Population student engagement icon

    • Identify emerging and potential problems or impacts relating to continued population growth
    • Changing demographics and aging populations
    • What are some solutions to dealing with population growth?


Student Engagementstudent engagement icon

    • How have students worked to engage and activate other students, community, faculty, staff, families, etc.?
    • How have student groups worked to change the problems we face?
    • What projects have been implemented, what ideas have been formed, and how will goals be accomplished?
    • What career opportunities exist for students interested in creating a resilient and sustainable future?


Water Resources water icon

    • What are the critical ethical, social, environmental, and economic determinants of and impacts on water resources of changing climate and population dynamics?
    • How should water resources be equitably allocated between users?

Through hosting this conference, The Institute for Sustainable Development provides access to relevant research and education about sustainability, as well as an open forum for discussion about sustainable practices. In some cases we may not share the same viewpoints or opinions of some of our participants. .


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  • Speaker Proposal Submissions: 8/1/18 - 10/31/18
  • Proposal Acceptance Notice: 11/30/18
  • Speaker Final Content Changes: 12/17/18
  • Sponsors Confirmed for Final Program 1/1/19
  • Final Scheduling Notification 1/31/19
  • Online Registration Opens 1/1/19-3/1/19
  • Paul Person’s Award Nominations: Deadline 2/1/19
  • Greenie Award Nominations: 10/31/18 – 2/1/19
  • Greenies Video Submissions: 2/28/19
  • Status Response to Greenie Nominees: 2/1/19
  • RSVP for Private Speaker Reception 2/28/19
  • Moderators Contact Speakers by 2/28/19

Please be considerate of conference coordinators by meeting each deadline. Thank you!