Distinguished Lecture on Sustainable Development by Professor Naoko Ishii

Safeguarding the Global Commons

Our world is encountering an unprecedented global environmental crisis. The current economic system is inflicting irreversible harm upon the stable and resilient planetary system,  often referred to as the global commons, which forms the bedrock of our prosperity and is a collective heritage shared by all humanity. We are now entering the “Anthropocene” epoch, a time when human activities have become the principal force shaping the global environment. To prevent further environmental degradation and ensure the bequest of a healthy planet to future generations, we must transform our economic systems and lifestyles. What modifications are required in our economy and way of life to achieve sustainability, and how can scientific advancements aid us in this crucial endeavor? This discourse will encompass the most recent deliberations within the international community on these pressing issues.

Date 11 July 2024 (Thursday)

10:00–11:30 am (HKT)
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Venue Lee Yuk Lecture Theatre (LT3), Yasumoto International Academic Park, CUHK



Professor Yuan Xu

Programme Leader (Environmental Policy and Governance)
Institute of Environment, Energy and Sustainability
The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Please click here to register
Enquiries sdsn@cuhk.edu.hk 

Professor Naoko Ishii

Professor Naoko Ishii is the special presidential envoy for Global Commons and Professor of Institute for Future Initiatives at the University of Tokyo. She is also the inaugural director of the Center for Global Commons (CGC), which is dedicated to achieving sustainable development within planetary boundaries. firmly believes that academia can play a pivotal role in mobilizing movements alongside policymakers, businesses, and civil society to ensure responsible stewardship of the global commons and a stable Earth system. Under her vision, CGC collaborates internationally on sustainability initiatives and spearhead projects with Japanese businesses on energy transition, food systems, and circular economy.

Previously, Professor Ishii led the Global Environment Facility (GEF) as CEO and chairperson (2012-2020), leading the transformation of key economic systems for sustainability. Her career includes roles at Japan's Ministry of Finance, with her last position as Deputy Vice Minister, as well as the World Bank and IMF.

She currently serves as a Board member of the UN Foundation, ClimateWorks Foundation, Emergent, and a member of the Advisory Board of Capitals Coalition, EAT Foundation, and Steering Committee of Global Commons Alliance. Dr. Ishii holds a Ph.D. from the University of Tokyo and has authored several books, two of which have received academic awards.

Distinguished Lecture on Sustainable Development by Professor Naoko Ishii is organised by The Hong Kong chapter of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN Hong Kong).