Post-Copenhagen: What Strategies Now?

Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 01:30 to 03:30
sLab, Ste. 600, 100 McCaul Street
Community members: 

What happened at Copenhagen, what worked, what didn’t, and most importantly – what now? Those who expected decisive agreements and large-scale governmental action from the recent Copenhagen negotiations are disappointed. However, now the emphasis falls on other strategies and technological opportunities we face to coordinate environmental movement, raise the standards of evidence and facilitate diverse responses to environmental challenges. How can distributed sensing and public publishing of data reveal this evidence, support local organizations and actions? How does Pachube – a kind of Facebook/YouTube for data – change the game? How can social networking be used in collective sense-making and lifestyle experiments to localize responsibility for environmental health? Is it the big opportunities – or not?

About the Speaker: 
Natalie Jeremijenko is an artist whose background includes studies in biochemistry, physics, neuroscience and precision engineering. Jeremijenko is a recipient of the 2008-2009 Van Alen Institute-New York Prize Fellowship in Sustainable Cities and the Social Sciences, and was recently named one of the 40 most influential designers by I.D. Magazine. She is an artist not-in-residence at the Institute for the Future (IFTF) in Palo Alto. Jeremijenko directs the xDesign Environmental Health Clinic [] at NYU. Her work is described as experimental design, hence xDesign, as it explores opportunities presented by new technologies for non-violent social change. Her research centers on structures of participation in the production of knowledge and information, and the political and social possibilities (and limitations) of information and emerging technologies — mostly through public experiments. In this vein, her work spans a range of media from statistical indices (such as the Despondency Index, which linked the Dow Jones to the suicide rate at San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge) to biological substrates (such as the installations of cloned trees in pairs in various urban micro-climates) to robotics (such as the development of feral robotic dog packs to investigate environmental hazards). Jeremjenko’s permanent installation on the roof of Postmasters Gallery in Chelsea Model Urban Development (MUD) provides infrastructure and facilities for high-density bird cohabitation in an environmental experiment in interaction with the New York City bird population.