Twenty years ago, many of the key environmental issues of the day, and their implications for national and global security, were too often discussed in isolation. Silo walls were rarely breached, and key players in the public and private sectors did not engage on a regular basis. Enter the Environmental Change and Security Program of the Wilson Center, an undertaking specifically designed to make connections between those that can achieve more working together than would ever be possible while acting separately. An all-star panel looks back at what's been achieved while also assessing the challenges that lie ahead.
For 20 years, the Environmental Change and Security Program has brought together a wide range of communities that do not always interact with one another to create new connections and discuss some of the most critical challenges facing the world today. We recently spoke with the program’s founding director, P.J. Simmons, and asked him to provide both a history lesson and a look forward.
“The Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program was one of the first to recognize the critical connections between the environment, population dynamics, and security,” says former Wilson Center President and Director Lee Hamilton on the 20th anniversary of the program.
“The Environmental Change and Security Program is one of the most innovative programs here at the Wilson Center,” says President and CEO Jane Harman on the 20th anniversary of the program. “The program’s hallmark has been content that brings timely analysis to new audiences in new ways."
According to a symposium of national leaders, profound and pervasive changes are already underway. They say that climate change related changes are affecting infrastructure, commerce, and the military in ways that compromise national security. Their discussion is the focus of this edition of REWIND.
June 19, 2014 Event, Fourth in USAID-Wilson Center Climate Change Adaptation Series
Asia is going through an unprecedented wave of urbanization. Secondary and tertiary cities are seeing the most rapid changes in land-use and ownership, social structures, and values as peri-urban and agricultural land become part of metropolitan cityscapes. All the while, climate change is making many of these fast-growing cities more vulnerable to disasters.
In this event to celebrate World Population Day, an expert panel discussed a number of strategies for strengthening communities and achieving a range of development goals such as providing appropriate sexual and reproductive health services and investment in education, especially for girls.
The Arctic is a nearly pristine environment containing vast resources that are attracting a growing number of non-Arctic nations. And questions about the changing nature of the region present challenges to our understanding of how to best approach a fragile ecosystem. Are the questions and challenges surrounding the Arctic regional or global in nature. Willy Østreng shares his thoughts during the final installment of our series, “Who Owns The Arctic?”
On the eve of World Population Day 2014, Roger-Mark De Souza, director of population,environmental security, and resilience for the Wilson Center discusses the latest thinking on population issues.