Nadine Gordimer comes to Stockholm for high-level talks on global sustainability

Nadine Gordimer Photo: Lärarnas Nyheter

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Science     2011-03-24

Nadine Gordimer comes to Stockholm for high-level talks on global sustainability

Mrs Nadine Gordimer will be attending the 3rd Nobel Laureate Symposium in Stockholm in May 2011.

Mrs Nadine Gordimer has accepted the invitation to participate as delegate to the 3rd Nobel Laureate Symposium. The Symposium will take place 16-19 May at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm, in the presence and with the support of HM King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.

As literature laureate and one of the world’s most prominent advocates of human rights, Mrs Gordimer will join a transdisciplinary high-level meeting at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm to formulate an action plan for the future stewardship of our planet.

Mrs Gordimer, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature 1991 for her epic writing in which the consequences of apartheid in South Africa forms the central theme.

"We are happy and honoured to welcome Mrs Gordimer to the Symposium. Her contribution to the abolishment of apartheid both as a writer and through her direct involvement in the anti-apartheid movement makes Mrs Gordimer an important source of experience on political and human system change. Mrs Gordimer’s participation is highly valued at a time when the need for global dialogue and connectivity is becoming increasingly important", said Professor Johan Rockström, Symposium Chair and Director of Stockholm Resilience Centre at Stockholm University, and Stockholm Environment Institute.

One part of the Symposium will explore the growing human influence on the Earth’s climate and ecosystems and the situation where nature no longer can be understood without accounting for the influence of humanity. In spite of immense technological development and progress, our economies and societies fundamentally depend on life-supporting ecosystems that provide us with a hospitable climate, clean water, food, fibres, building material, storm and flood protection and numerous other goods and services.

By deepening the dialogue around climate and environmental issues from an ecological, economic, social and political perspective among Nobel Laureates and high-level decision makers from business and political life, another step towards Planetary Stewardship for global sustainable development can be taken.

The Symposium is part of a series of meetings initiated in 2007 at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research hosted by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, followed by a second meeting at St. James’s Palace under the auspices of the Prince of Wales.

The 3rd Symposium will gather more than twenty Nobel Laureates, several leading policy makers and some of the world’s most renowned thinkers and experts on global sustainability. The meeting will take a transdisciplinary approach and adopt a systems perspective on climate change and deteriorating ecosystems by proposing a discussion around how economic, political and social systems can be governed within the boundaries of the planet.

A key topic for the discussions will be how societies can be innovative and boost the planet’s resilience rather than reducing it. How can we increase biodiversity, be stewards of ecosystems and increase the options for human welfare on Earth?

The Symposium will conclude with a memorandum signed by key Nobel Laureates. The memorandum will be communicated and handed over to the High-level Panel on Global Sustainability appointed by the UN Secretary General. The conclusions of the Panel will also feed into the preparations for the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro and into the ongoing climate negotiations.

The 3rd Nobel Laureate Symposium on Global Sustainability is organised by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm Environment Institute, Stockholm Resilience Centre at Stockholm University, Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics and Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.

For further information please contact:
Stellan Forsberg, tel. +46 70 763 97 66, stellan.forsberg(at) or
Ellika Hermansson Török, tel. +46 73 707 85 47, ellika(at)

Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences,
Stockholm Resilience Centre,
Stockholm Environment Institute,
The Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics,
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research,