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Industrial Ecology
Gordon Research Conference

Transforming the Industrial Metabolism

Dates

June 1-6, 2014

Location

Renaissance Tuscany Il Ciocco
Lucca (Barga), Italy

Organizers

Chair:
Helga Weisz

Vice Chair:
Heinz Schandl

Meeting Description

The 2014 Gordon Research Conference on Industrial Ecology will focus on the science informing the transformation of the industrial metabolism towards sustainability. The concept of industrial metabolism refers to the exchanges between social and environmental systems which constitute the physical basis of modern societies: the use of raw materials, their conversion into manufactured capital, goods and services, and their subsequent release to the environment as wastes and emissions. Besides unquestionable contributions to human welfare, the industrial metabolism also negatively impacts the Earth's climate and ecosystems. Quantifying the industrial metabolism and assessing the potential to abate its environmental impacts through improved resource efficiency, decoupling, recycling, and eco-symbiosis have characterized industrial ecology research over the past two decades. In recent years, the research orientation has moved towards more comprehensive and scenario-based analysis, applying sophisticated analytical tools and linking the science with institutional and policy applications. Significant challenges motivate a stronger focus towards transforming the industrial metabolism. These challenges include climate mitigation, climate adaptation, raw material constraints due to rapid industrialization in large economies, shifting demand structures resulting from technology transitions, accelerated global interconnectedness of production and consumption, rapid urbanization and a prevailing inequality regarding access to the global commons. Invited speakers will present the research frontiers in addressing the complex connections between these challenges and a sustainability transformation of the industrial metabolism. Gordon Research Conferences (GRCs) are unique among scientific meetings for their prestige, quality of content, intimate setting, diversity of participants, research—often unpublished—at the frontiers of science, and a schedule designed to encourage extensive discussion and informal interactions.

Contributors

Meeting Program

SUNDAY
4:00 pm - 8:00 pmArrival and Check-in
6:00 pmDinner
7:30 pm - 7:40 pmWelcome / Introductory Comments by GRC Site Staff and the Conference Chair
7:40 pm - 9:30 pmEnergy and Materials: A Long Term Perspective
Discussion Leader: Roland Clift (University of Surrey)
7:40 pm - 8:20 pm Timothy Lenton (University of Exeter)
"Revolutions in Free Energy and Materials Recycling in Earth History"
8:20 pm - 8:35 pm Discussion
8:35 pm - 9:15 pm Nebojsa Nakicenovic (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis and Vienna University of Technology)
"Transformational Pathways Toward Sustainable Energy Futures"
9:15 pm - 9:30 pm Discussion
MONDAY
7:30 am - 8:30 amBreakfast
9:00 am - 12:30 pmTowards an Industrial Ecology of Trade
Discussion Leader: Sangwon Suh (University of California St. Barbara)
9:00 am - 9:40 am Tommy Wiedmann (University of New South Wales)
"Sustainability of International Production and Consumption"
9:40 am - 10:00 am Discussion
10:00 am Coffee Break
10:30 am - 11:10 am Peter-Paul Pichler (Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research)
"Power Asymmetries in Physical Global Trade Networks: A Complex Network Analysis"
11:10 am - 11:30 am Discussion
11:30 am - 12:10 pm Joy Murray (University of Sydney)
"The Social Costs of Trade"
12:10 pm - 12:30 pm Discussion
12:30 pmLunch
1:30 pm - 4:30 pmFree Time
4:30 pm - 6:00 pmPoster Session
6:00 pm - 8:00 pmChallenges and Trade-Offs in Reducing Material and Carbon Footprints
Discussion Leader: Sabrina Spatari (Drexel University)
6:00 pm - 6:40 pm Bastien Girod (ETH Zürich)
"Reducing Embodied Carbon Emissions Through Changing Consumption Choices: Learnings from Early Policy and Firm Activities"
6:40 pm - 7:00 pm Discussion
7:00 pm - 7:40 pm Stefanie Hellweg (ETH Zürich)
"Optimizing the Life Cycle of Wood"
7:40 pm - 8:00 pm Discussion
8:00 pmDinner
TUESDAY
7:30 am - 8:30 amBreakfast
8:30 amGroup Photo
9:00 am - 12:30 pmBalancing Criticality, Dematerialization and Climate Change
Discussion Leader: Thomas E. Graedel (Yale University)
9:00 am - 9:40 am Edgar Hertwich (Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
"Material Implications of Decarbonized Energy Systems"
9:40 am - 10:00 am Discussion
10:00 am Coffee Break
10:30 am - 11:10 am Barbara Reck (Yale University)
"Metals Criticality and Supply Risks"
11:10 am - 11:30 am Discussion
11:30 am - 12:10 pm Daniel Müller (Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
"A Socio-Metabolic Framework for Climate Change Mitigation"
12:10 pm - 12:30 pm Discussion
12:30 pmLunch
1:30 pm - 4:30 pmFree Time
4:30 pm - 6:00 pmPoster Session
6:00 pm - 8:00 pmThe Socio-Metabolic Implications of Time Use
Discussion Leader: Marina Fischer-Kowalski (Alpen-Adria University)
6:00 pm - 6:40 pm Angela Druckmann (University of Surrey)
"Spending Time in a Low Carbon Society: Less Stuff, More Fun?"
6:40 pm - 7:00 pm Discussion
7:00 pm - 7:40 pm Mikko Jalas (Aalto University)
"Why Time: Different Understandings of Individual Behavior in Activity-Based Modelling"
7:40 pm - 8:00 pm Discussion
8:00 pmDinner
WEDNESDAY
7:30 am - 8:30 amBreakfast
9:00 am - 12:30 pmResource Efficiency and Climate Mitigation in Cities
Discussion Leader: Marian Chertow (Yale University)
9:00 am - 9:40 am Chris Kennedy (University of Toronto)
"Thermodynamics of Cities"
9:40 am - 10:00 am Discussion
10:00 am Coffee Break
10:30 am - 11:10 am James Keirstead (Imperial College of London)
"Metabolic Impacts of the London Congestion Charge"
11:10 am - 11:30 am Discussion
11:30 am - 12:10 pm Stephanie Pincetl (University of California, Los Angeles)
"An Urban Metabolism Approach to Los Angeles"
12:10 pm - 12:30 pm Discussion
12:30 pmLunch
1:30 pm - 4:30 pmFree Time
4:30 pm - 6:00 pmPoster Session
6:00 pm - 8:00 pmTalks Selected from Abstracts: Cradle to Great - What's Next in the Life Cycle of Industrial Ecology?
Discussion Leader: Sarah Russell Smith (Stanford University)
6:00 pm - 6:15 pm David Luke Oates (Carnegie Mellon University)
"Micro-Modeling Electric Power in LCA"
6:15 pm - 6:20 pm Discussion
6:20 pm - 6:35 pm Guillaume Majeau-Bettez (Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
"Coproduction Modelling in Industrial Ecology: A Unity of LCA Allocations and EEIO Constructs"
6:35 pm - 6:40 pm Discussion
6:40 pm - 6:55 pm Nedal Nassar (Yale University)
"Global Stocks and Flows, Losses and Recoveries of Platinum-Group Elements"
6:55 pm - 7:00 pm Discussion
7:00 pm - 7:15 pm Sarah Russell Smith (Stanford University)
"Sustainable Target Value Framework: Integrating Life Cycle Assessment and Target Value Design to Improve Building Energy and Environmental Performance"
7:15 pm - 7:20 pm Discussion
7:20 pm - 7:35 pm Dominik Wiedenhofer (Alpen-Adria University)
"Modelling Global In-Use Stock Dynamics During the Socio-Metabolic Transition, from 1900-2009"
7:35 pm - 7:40 pm Discussion
7:40 pm - 7:55 pm Tomer Fishman (Nagoya University)
"The Weight of Society over Time and Space"
7:55 pm - 8:00 pm Discussion
8:00 pmDinner
THURSDAY
7:30 am - 8:30 amBreakfast
8:30 am - 9:00 amBusiness Meeting
Nominations for the Next Vice Chair; Fill in Conference Evaluation Forms; Discuss Future Site and Scheduling Preferences; Election of the Next Vice Chair
9:00 am - 12:30 pmSocial Metabolism and Human Development
Discussion Leader: Anthony Chiu (De La Salle University)
9:00 am - 9:40 am Shonali Pachauri (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis)
"Universal Modern Energy Access: Potential Synergies and Tradeoffs with Other Sustainable Development Goals"
9:40 am - 10:00 am Discussion
10:00 am Coffee Break
10:30 am - 11:10 am Julia Steinberger (University of Leeds)
"Decoupling and Human Development: A New Frontier for Industrial Ecology?"
11:10 am - 11:30 am Discussion
11:30 am - 12:10 pm Jonathan Cullen (University of Cambridge)
"Material Flow in a Circular Economy"
12:10 pm - 12:30 pm Discussion
12:30 pmLunch
1:30 pm - 4:30 pmFree Time
4:30 pm - 6:00 pmPoster Session
6:00 pm - 8:00 pmExcellence and Relevance: The Science - Policy Interface
Discussion Leader: Makarand Dehejia (International Society for Industrial Ecology)
6:00 pm - 6:40 pm Rosina Bierbaum (University of Michigan, Chair, Science and Technical Advisory Panel of the Global Environment Facility, World Bank Adaptation Fellow, Member of President Obama's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology)
"Insights from Working at the Science-Policy-Development Interface"
6:40 pm - 7:00 pm Discussion
Discussion Leader: Robert Anex (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm Panel Discussion
"What Are the Take Home Messages from This Conference?"
  • Reid Lifset (Yale University)
  • Martha Stevenson (World Wildlife Fund)
  • Walter Reinhard (CSIRO)
  • Megha Shenoy (Sustainable Research Consultant)
8:00 pmDinner
FRIDAY
7:30 am - 8:30 amBreakfast
9:00 amDeparture
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