You may say I’m a dreamer/But I’m not the only one/I hope someday you’ll join us/And the world will be as one,” “Imagine,” John Lennon
Telluride Inside… and Out met the Bioneers founders Kenny Ausubel and Nina Simons in the 1990s, when they came to town for a talk. Their progeny return Star Trek-style, Friday, October 14 – Sunday, October 16, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., when Bioneers beam into Telluride’s five star Wilkinson Public Library for its annual conference. (Telluride’s Library’s the only screening venue for the entire Western Slope.)
The Bioneers conference happens in conjunction with an event offered by the University Centers of the San Miguel on Monday, October 10, Tuesday, October 11, and Monday, October 18. “Bioneers into Action” covers the basic vocabulary of sustainability and highlights each one of the presenters from Bioneers upcoming plenary sessions. Local sustainability coordinator for The New Community Coalition, Kris Holstrom, and Executive Director of UCSM, Robyn Wilson teach the class.
“The idea is to give participants the tools to grasp the complex ideas discussed at Bioneers and then use this information to create a community initiative that will spread the message of Bioneers throughout the region,” explains Wilson. “For students in high school and above, this class is also available for college credit.”
What is Bioneers? Ausubel coined the term in 1990 to describe an emerging culture. Bioneers are social and scientific innovators from all walks of life and disciplines who have peered deep into the heart of living systems to understand how nature operates. The idea is to mimic “nature’s operating instructions” to serve human ends without harming the web of life. Nature’s principles—kinship, cooperation, diversity, symbiosis and cycles of continuous creation absent of waste—can also serve as metaphoric guideposts for organizing an equitable, compassionate and democratic society, concepts that have fallen out of today’s headlines in favor of a human nature red in tooth and claw.
Included on the list of presenters for the 2011 Bioneers conference: activists/thinkers Amory Lovens, Rikki Ott, Phillipe Cousteau, regular Telluride Shroomfest presenter, Paul Stamets, Gloria Steinem, Joshua Fouts and Rita King, collaborators in building “a new global culture and economy in the Imagination Age.”
Like all good Bioneers, Fouts and King pick up where John Lennon left off. But they are not mere dreamers. They don’t just imagine. They do.
Rita King has served as Innovator-in-Residence at IBM’s Analytics Virtual Center, a former Senior Fellow at The Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs in New York City and a current Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of the Presidency & Congress in Washington DC. Her essays, various writings and works of art have been commissioned, published and exhibited globally. She founded Dancing Ink Productions and also serves as Executive VP for Business development at Science House and resident futurist at NASA Langley’s think tank, the National Institute of Aerospace.
Joshua Fouts is Executive Director of Science House Foundation, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit dedicated to igniting the imagination and bringing the excitement of science to students around the world. Fouts is a writer, journalist, gamer and technologist. He has worked at the forefront of exploring and chronicling the evolving use of emergent technology for journalism, government, academia and the private sector. He is a senior fellow for Digital Media and Public Policy at the Center for the Study of the Presidency & Congress, a Next Generation Fellow at The American Assembly, and Executive Producer at Dancing Ink Productions, a digital media strategy firm.
During the Bioneers event, Fouts is scheduled to discuss the work they do at Science House: “A New Chapter for the Imagination Age.” They also plan to highlight details from their 2009 report: “Understanding Islam through Virtual Worlds” and recent projects, including, “IMAGINATION: Creating the Future of Education.”
We could all use a little of what Bioneers is selling when they cyber-visit town: “a future environment of hope.” Join the crowd for the 2011 to view one or all the presentations. You will be in good company on both sides of the screen.
To learn more about the Bioneers Conference visit www.bioneers.org. To sign up for the pre-conference class, go to the Wilkinson Public Library or contact Robyn Wilson at 970-369-5255.
To learn more about Paul Stamets, follow this link.
To preview details from the King/Fouts talks for Bioneers, click the “play” button and listen to my interview with these two high-functioning nerds.