Global Futures: Futurecast | Vol. 3, Fall 2022

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TM Global FuturecastFutures: Edition 3 | Fall 2022

Next-gen decision support Our future depends on the choices we make

Choices made by societies over the past centuries have caused multiple planetary crises and led us to the brink of local and global catastrophes. We are living deep in the buffer zone of the life supporting systems of our planet without knowing how large this buffer really is. There is increasing recognition that we have to make better choices to move toward a future in which life, including human life, can thrive on a healthy planet. At this moment, the world is moving farther away from the trajectory that international bodies have outlined as desirable, despite increasingly frequent warnings from the planet and the scientific community. Nation-states have given themselves targets, but the leaders and the populace have not made the decisions necessary to meet those targets. We must determine how to incentivize people and decision-makers to not just commit in the abstract but to make the decisions that allow them to meet those targets. And we actually have options for solutions to most of the problems we have created.

What is the best choice now?

Given the urgency of the problems we are dealing with and the fact that, in principle, we have options to respond to them, it might seem like a straightforward process to change the decisions we make, but the simplicity of the phrasing conceals the complexity of the undertaking. For decision-makers acting in good faith, selecting the right pathway, the right policy, is far from a clear task. On scales local to global, decision-makers are encumbered by their own beliefs and values, as well as those of their constituents. They are charged with weighing alternative options, considering opportunity costs, assessing risks, and coping simultaneously with uncertainty and urgency. And they are expected to have the capacity to imagine the outcomes of a policy or set of policies in a complex adaptive system with multiple, interdependent stressors.

In its full capacity, DT3 would provide decision-makers with on-demand results and visualizations. It could be programmed to couple digital twin functions to provide policymakers and elected officials the opportunity to simulate overlapping systems and “see” change. As a virtual asset, it can be used for engagement in places as varied as the United Nations to neighborhood associations interested in better understanding what a policy means for their constituency. Read more about how two of our scientists, Manfred Laubichler and Patricia Solis, are looking at DT3 in this edition.

Peter Schlosser Vice President and Vice Provost, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory, Arizona State University

The Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures LaboratoryTM is designed to better understand societal will and how to incentivise societies toward actions that will enable a thriving future for all. The laboratory is committed to developing high-quality decision support tools for a future of opportunity. The laboratory’s Decision Theater serves as the prototype to help governing bodies make the best choice with present-day information. When Decision Theater launched in 2007, it was far ahead of its time. It served as a collaborative aid for visualization and real-time decision-making. As it enhanced its capability to include scenario building, it began to enable forecasting and modeling. The physical space was a convenient site for decision debates and engagement among multiple stakeholders.

Its next iteration, Decision Theater 3.0 or DT3, will turn the model into an indispensable tool for imagining a just, sustainable future and acting on it. It can become a virtual participant in critical policy discussions, furthering its ability to be a real factor in

Decision support is a critical component of science-informed policies. And academia is the primary knowledge generator of society. As such, it has an obligation and mandate to support factbased decision-making. However, knowledge production does not equal policy action as it is only one of many inputs that affects decision-making. Additionally, in our increasingly interconnected world, scientists and scholars must learn to convey partial knowledge to aid officials, particularly in times of crisis. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic serves as an illustration and case study of the difficulties of conveying information and selecting appropriate policies in a time of high uncertainty and unknowns, with the overlapping challenge of misinformation and disinformation supplanting the truth. Nimbleness is required in a crisis where facts may be limited, yet still point in a specific direction. Academia must seek out data for action by policymakers. Knowledge generators have to learn to convey knowledge, even if it’s not yet complete.

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decision-making processes. To be effective, DT3 will require massive amounts of real-time data that can be sorted, selected and incorporated by an intelligent database to provide compelling visualizations and models of alternative pathways. Then, through augmented intelligence, DT3 will select the data, algorithms and models and return results as close to real time as possible. Results will continue to adapt with newly updated data points. But this is not all that is needed. DT3 will also incorporate the “human factor.” This means two things. First, we can no longer model natural processes without the effects of human actions and decisions. And second, modeling different scenarios and intervention points requires that a better understanding of decision processes becomes an integral part of research agenda development.

To allow people to make the best decision now, decision support needs to be responsive, current and adaptive to inputs from multiple systems and interacting stressors. It must also be accessible, trustworthy and globally relevant. That goal underlines the efforts underway at the Global Futures Laboratory, which will partner with local, national and international entities to support societal transitions through cutting-edge decision support.

global temperature rise. Scientists with the ASU Center for Global Discovery and Conservation Science released a report showing how sunken warships are becoming habitats for coral regrowth. This discovery coincides with new research from scientists at the Florida Aquarium who have developed a process to reproduce fragile Caribbean corals. And this fall, ASU is launching a number of new centers dedicated to convening people to better understand behaviors and policy decisions while working with stakeholders to drive decision-making processes that are inclusive, equitable and smart for future growth. These include the Center for an Arizona Carbon-Neutral Economy, the Center for Energy Research and Policy and a new multi-institution partnership with UNESCO called BRIDGES, designed to better integrate sustainability science into society.

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This trend of extreme climate impacts on various regions of our planet is no longer unusual, but an annual occurrence of starkly visible environmental changes that are directly attributable to the Anthropocene — the time when human activity is directly altering our climate and world. Yet, despite the seeming onslaught of disaster, we still find ourselves standing at the front edge of a decisive decade in which we as humans remain able to develop solutions to these challenges instead of further digging a hole we are unable to climb out of.

This year, the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory in partnership with Carbon Collect has deployed the first MechanicalTreeTM based on research by ASU Professor Klaus Lackner. This passive carbon capture technology has the potential to remove carbon from the atmosphere at ten times the rate of natural trees, providing a comprehensive technology-nature solution approach to curbing

Accelerating risks demand urgent actions

Since March 30, 2022, the U.S. has witnessed nine billion-dollar catastrophic climate events, from drought in the Southwest to tornadoes in the Southeast to destructive hailstorms in May in the northern Midwest. Globally, Europe is addressing unprecedented drought in its primary agriculture regions; Afghanistan has dealt with tragic results from a warm winter merging with a record monsoon, creating deathly floods; and the Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica continues to trend to a “doomsday” melt that could raise global sea levels by a matter of feet, not inches.

• The 2022 Global Futures Conference.

• 10 New Insights in Climate Science 2022.

The Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory is at the core of three additional efforts taking place this fall with the specific intention to help shape decision-making and policy engagement:

• Carbon-free energy consortia.

Read on to learn more about these efforts.

The Global Futures Conference and its “10 Must Haves” build on the insights from these efforts to codesign an urgently needed “Plan B,” establishing an aggressive series of targets and associated actions toward futures in which all can thrive.

The 2022 Global Futures Conference

That is the central question for the 2022 Global Futures Conference, a world-class convening of global stakeholders representing a wide diversity of backgrounds, ages and experiences. This inaugural conference will be held in New York City from Sept. 20-22, coinciding with the 77th United Nations General Assembly and the 2022 Climate Week NYC activities. More than 150 leaders will come together to consider a new framework of 10 “must-have” outcomes and then design through dynamic, engaged working sessions the “must-do” actions to actualize the goals.

Several well-researched and ambitious frameworks already exist to reroute humans on a sustainable path for the future. For example, the 2015 U.N. General Assembly established a set of goals that were designed to address the needs of the planet and its populations, called the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Yet, we now are eight years from arriving at 2030 and, in all likelihood, will not reach the targets set to repair our relationship with each other and earth’s life-supporting systems.

Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garcés and the Right Honorable Helen Clark, former prime minister of New Zealand. The conference is organized and co-hosted by the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory and the Earth League, guided jointly by Peter Schlosser and Johan Rockström.

“The goal of this conference, which we have been working toward with our expert steering committee, is to provide a new road map for humankind to use as we continue to learn and innovate through this critical time,” said Schlosser. “I cannot imagine a more invested group of people than those who are set to participate in this conference to help lay out options for our pathways ahead. I am excited to see how the outcomes of this conference will be able to help shape some of the research agenda and global partnerships for Global Futures Laboratory.”

What are the “must-have” outcomes and “mustdo” actions that can accelerate the necessary transformations to a safe, just and habitable planet for all? In other words, what keeps us from acting and what options are left if we do not meet the targets presently set for moving into a future that leaves options for the next generations to thrive on a healthy planet?

The finalized outputs of the Global Futures Conference will be distributed this winter.

Conference speakers and participants include such noted scholars and experts as celebrated oceanographer and environmentalist Sylvia Earle, former president of the U.N. General Assembly

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10 New Insights in ScienceClimate2022

Learn more at: 10insightsclimate.science

The 2022 edition of “10 New Insights” will be released at COP27 in Egypt this November. With COP26 failing to establish agreements around coal-based energy and climate-based finance, this new set of insights will look to provide key implications for policymakers at global, regional and local levels that address these and other key areas.

The “10 New Insights in Climate Science” report is prepared by a consortium of leading researchers from around the world. The Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory is the North American secretariat for the Earth League, one of the primary and founding partners of this publication.

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Since 2017, scientists from the Earth League, Future Earth and the World Climate Research Programme have published the “10 New Insights in Climate Science” for the international climate negotiations by way of its annual launch at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties (COP). This report outlines 10 recent and essential climaterelated research findings that can be used by world leaders to preserve and protect the planet.

While the 2021 report stated that stabilizing global warming at or below 1.5 degrees Celsius remained viable, the world would require immediate actions across a number of areas to ensure that meeting at least 50% greenhouse gas reductions by 2030 and net zero targets by 2040 could be attained.

“To put it simply, the state of the planet is broken,” said António Guterres, United Nations SecretaryGeneral, in his 2021 State of the Planet address. The state of the planet’s brokenness is exacerbated by the impacts of Russia’s war in Ukraine, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the failure of infrastructure across Mississippi from flooding and a new potential famine hitting eastern Africa.

Clean hydrogen is a promising solution to two of renewable energy’s challenges: that solar power is naturally intermittent, and that achieving deep decarbonization will require an alternative source of fuel to displace the natural gas and oil that power many vehicles and industrial processes. Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe and a fuel source that produces no carbon emissions. While the clean hydrogen economy has been promised for decades, it has failed to materialize due to several technological and economic hurdles. But Ellen B. Stechel, the co-director of LightWorks, a Senior Global Futures Scientist and a professor of practice in the School of Molecular Sciences, believes hydrogen’s time has come.

especially attentive to communities hard hit by plant closures, and rural and Indigenous communities.”

“There’s virtually no disagreement in Arizona that we need to decarbonize,” says Gary Dirks, senior director of the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory. “As we’re making this transformation toward renewable energy and phasing out fossil fuels, we have to get it right.”

He points to the urgent need for an “us” mindset in order to make the transition to a carbon-neutral economy equitable, to bring along people who are most vulnerable to energy shortages, and to bring along those whose jobs will change during the transition.

“We cannot leave people behind as we transform the energy system,” he says. “We need to be

ASU LightWorks®, under the direction of Dirks, is a multidisciplinary effort within the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory to solve energy challenges. LightWorks brings together researchers and stakeholders, including policymakers, business leaders and community leaders, to address pressing climate issues. These collaborations, Dirks says, are absolutely key.

For Arizonans, furthering a clean-energy transition in partnership with numerous stakeholders presents a historic opportunity to remake the economy in a way that benefits everyone, including businesses, residents, rural areas and the most vulnerable communities.

Carbon-freeenergyconsortia

“This energy transformation is going to take deep relationship building,” Dirks says. “We also need to be more purposeful about including all sectors and disciplines, especially social scientists who can help think about how we can evolve our political and societal will to change policies and our behavior. This framework is crucial for creating a successful transition.”

“Our goal is to reach a carbon-neutral economy, but since there will be support from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, our first focus is clean hydrogen,” Stechel says.

A major part of AzCaNE’s work is collaborating with researchers, utilities and other stakeholders to find

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Stechel is the director of the recently established Center for an Arizona Carbon-Neutral Economy (AzCaNE), a coalition founded by Arizona Public Service, Salt River Project, Tucson Electric Power, Southwest Gas, ASU, The University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University. AzCaNE, which is part of the Global Futures Laboratory and housed in the Rob and Melani Walton Center for Planetary Health, is joined by the Arizona Commerce Authority and many other stakeholders, including businesses and cities, and is in conversation with tribal communities.

In addition to these technologies and while working on the social and behavioral aspects of the transition, ASU is developing and scaling other technological solutions toward a carbon-neutral economy, including carbon capture, water conservation, better battery storage, more resilient electrical grids, ways of approaching agriculture that improve soil and lower carbon emissions — and many more. The goal is to build a carbon-neutral economy that benefits all “WeArizonans.havetocome

together with an inclusive mindset, not an us versus them approach, to pave the path toward the economy and planet we all want to see,” Dirks says.

ways to dramatically lower the cost of hydrogen production to make it cost competitive with fossil fuels. This means creating future-forward technologies that scale. One of the more notable examples of this kind of technology is being developed by Ivan Ermanoski, a research professor at LightWorks and the School of Sustainability, and a Senior Global Futures Scientist, in a highly collaborative project for which Stechel serves as the principal investigator.

The last section of this article is excerpted from the story Going Carbon Neutral by Daniel Oberhaus in the Fall 2022 edition of ASU Thrive.

The intersection of Indigenous knowledge and international law in an increasingly global society

Once ignored, the role of Indigenous people in shaping our global futures has become integral in designing pathways to solutions. At a presentation at the ASU Rob and Melani Walton Center for Planetary Health during Earth Week of 2022, Conservation International founder Peter Seligmann said, “40% of this planet Earth is under the active guardianship of Indigenous peoples. These are the peoples who have not only the territory but have the wisdom. These territories are still healthy because they have the innate, committed, culturally shaped belief systems.” Yet, forces imposed upon Indigenous people force displacement, and other systems focus on extracting knowledge for benefit without reciprocation for the property that was cultivated by Indigenous peoples and cultures. In this conversation, three Global Futures Scholars discuss what it means to be Indigenous in this new and rapidly developing world and how this cultural knowledge is being welcomed to the negotiating table.

mainstreamingNon-extractive

Melissa K. Nelson is a professor of Indigenous sustainability in the School of Sustainability. Her background as an Indigenous ecologist, writer, editor, media-maker and scholar-activist enables her to be a transdisciplinary and community-based scholar dedicated to Indigenous rights and sustainability, biocultural heritage and environmental justice, intercultural solidarity, and the renewal and celebration of community health and cultural arts. She actively advocates for Indigenous peoples’ rights and sustainable lifeways in higher education, nonprofits and philanthropy, and is particularly passionate about Indigenous food sovereignty at local, regional and global levels.

Timiebi Aganaba is an assistant professor of space and society in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society and an affiliate faculty with the Interplanetary Initiative. She also holds a courtesy appointment at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. Aganaba currently serves on the advisory board for the Space Generation Advisory Council supporting the U.N. Programme on Space Applications, the Science Advisory Board of World View Enterprises and the SETI Institute. Prior to ASU, she was a teaching associate (France, 2008) and associate chair (Ireland, 2017) of the space policy, law and economics department at the International Space University, and has represented Nigeria at the U.N. as a Next Generation Aviation Professional at the International Civil Aviation Organization Model Council in Montreal (2014) and at the legal subcommittee of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space in Vienna (2011).

Faheem Hussain is assistant professor in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society, where he is the chair of the Master of Science in Global Technology and Development program, and has more than 15 years of experience conducting research on socioeconomic development and technological interventions in Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa and North America. With research interests based in digital solutions for refugees, information and communication technology for sustainable development, digital rights, gender empowerment using STEM, and the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals. Beyond academia, Hussain works as a technology policy specialist in various research projects with UN-ESCAP/ APCICT, USAID, international development agencies, including IDRC, DFID, Ford and Rockefeller Foundation, and international think tanks in the fields of technology, public policy and development.

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Timi Aganaba: It’s fascinating in the context of the fact that we’re talking about people taking spaces in the metaverse, when Indigenous people are still trying to say, “The very spot I’m standing on right now is not mine.” What are we talking about when we’re talking about Indigenous?

Melissa Nelson: Right. I think you know law and science came out of a handful of people, usually European and usually male. And we think of it as universal knowledge. That is kind of like the trick of intellectual colonialism. We think it’s universal, because we’ve all been brainwashed and taught that it’s universal, through schools and institutions and the power elite, domination through the history of imperialism and colonialism. Indigenous peoples by many definitions are those who have been colonized. Those who have been colonized by a power, foreign or another. Indigenous peoples believe that they are from the land, even though some have migrated. And there are many different theories of migration, and people will always move around. But what’s Indigenous in Africa is going to be completely different from what’s Indigenous in North America, Mesoamerica, Pacific Islands, the Arctic, etc. We are place-based peoples, and so our very concepts of indigeneity are going to completely differ, and no one person can speak for any others.

Faheem Hussain: How do you envision Indigenous knowledge or the process of Indigenous decision-making to be a part of the present and into the future — perhaps virtually, and more importantly, integrated from local to global?

Melissa Nelson: Why are we talking about it?

Timi Aganaba: Yes. I have to put my hand up straightaway and say, from my experience of the workplace and other high level environments, people do not have access to African women. So, they think I must know something about what “African” people as a whole think, feel and believe. But of course I have no experience of that. I can’t speak for African peoples, despite my Nigerian origins. I am British by birth and Canadian by choice. But, when talking about the “African” position as a marginalized one, I am an international lawyer, and what I can do is look at how states make decisions and collaborate with each other. How do we figure out who is the decision-maker, who is part of the conversation? And whose version of right or wrong is being considered? It’s only when I went to Nigeria to study law that I learned international law was established by a small group of people, a couple of countries, who went around deciding whatever they wanted to. And that is now international law. The Indigenous perspective to international law is likely about how do you get your system and knowledge into the mainstream, selfdetermination and recognition? If you weren’t there in the past, how are you able to count in the future? Because law is first all about what was already decided. We have to give people an opportunity to say something like the law can and does evolve. And evolution means bringing

in new voices and new perspectives because it’s not static. In fact my favorite quote from Duncan Kennedy is, “Once I believed the materials and procedure produced the outcome, now I experience the procedure as something I do to the materials to produce the outcome I want.”

I am speaking for myself as a mixed-raced Anishinaabe woman. I think that local knowledge is so essential, and yet there’s such a global interest now in Indigenous knowledge. Yet, there are no Indigenous knowledges without Indigenous peoples at the table. How do we elevate Indigenous leaders who hold Indigenous knowledge systems from their local communities, who then can interface with global systems and global dynamics, all within a basis of human rights? We now have the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN-DRIP). I think these are universal mechanisms that many Indigenous peoples now use, because they are about human rights

There’s finally now an interest by Western science and others about Indigenous knowledge systems, because there are memories and histories in the sciences and stories that go back thousands of years about climate change, about cataclysmic events, about how to live sustainably and self-sufficiently within your home ecosystem. But we have to be very wary of the European habit of extraction, and recognize that knowledge is often extracted from others. Indigenous peoples have had their land taken, their religions taken, their spirits taken and beaten in boarding schools, and now their knowledge is being elevated, but it’s being done often in an extractive way, not in a respectful way.

But we have to be very wary of the European habit of extraction, and recognize that knowledge is often extracted from others.

and Indigenous rights for the first time being explicit and recognized, not being invisible or marginalized. These mechanisms are trying to uplift Indigenous well-being and knowledge systems so that they are on equal footing with European western knowledge systems, not always subsumed under and considered primitive.

Faheem Hussain: I am working with some of the most vulnerable communities in the world who have been persecuted based on their ethnicities, persecuted based on the questions of Indigenousness. According to their oppressors, they are “the others,” hence nonhumans, and can be persecuted.

Such problems are amplifying in the digital space as well. In such an oppressive environment, how do you the people who lost lands, rights, languages create their own identity? The Rohingyas do not have alphabets, so for them the digital space is a refuge for their future, or at least for their future generations to keep something to build on not in the digital space, and maybe at some point in the physical space as well. It can be a hybrid way of keeping someone’s culture alive. But then the question remains, are you really doing it in a non-extractive way? Aren’t we using some of the commercially made platforms to store our knowledges, which we hold so dear? But then who decides on the norms of those platforms that are going to be the repository of our Indigenous knowledge? Aren’t we then confining ourselves to some of the parameters decided by somebody

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So yeah, we can be excited that there’s this U.N. declaration, but it’s unenforceable unless it’s in the national law. How is it going to be in the national law if you want to directly challenge the sovereignty of that state? So it’s really, really challenging. And so, talking about non-extractive practices, yes, we say people should come to the table. But most times people don’t know what the issues are that they’re discussing. So yes, you can bring all these people to the table. But if we’re all here talking about this U.N. agreement, and you think it’s a treaty, you think it’s a political statement,

self-determination. Western scholars increasingly focus on the human rights aspect as the win. Now, as an international lawyer, the challenge that I have is that national self-determination appears to challenge the principle of territorial integrity (or sovereignty) of states, as it is the will of the people that makes a state legitimate. So what you have with the U.N. declaration, which is not a binding legal treaty, is a political statement that has to be interpreted into the domestic law of the state before it can be implemented.

living somewhere else with very limited or no knowledge about my culture, lifestyle, values?

Now in this new world, where our physical boundaries are kind of getting redefined by our virtual boundaries — the Republic of Facebook, Republic of Google, and so many other things — who is Indigenous in such spaces? When we talk about citizenship, decision-making is kind of related to my rights. So, when we talk about Indigenousness, as if the hundreds and thousands of years of oppression were not bad enough, now we have to deal with the possible oppressions of the new data/ information regimes and these related questions.

Timi Aganaba: The interesting thing that I heard you not say, that you kind of said, is about identity, right? Everything is about identity. And the interesting thing is all the stuff that I was reading about blockchain and the marginalized was this technology is going to help people that don’t have identity, right? Because they don’t have documents, they don’t have passports, and they are displaced. Without an ID, it’s almost impossible to access financial institutions, attend school and go to the doctor. What are normally day-to-day tasks, like buying groceries, are even more complicated for people that don’t exist in the public record. However, I am pretty sure these people have no idea of the problems that occur due to flaws in blockchain protocols, smart contracts and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs).

Secondly, in the context of the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People, a lot of people will talk about the human rights aspect of it. But the interesting thing is because of the diversity of Indigenous people that actually had to come together, everyone had different perspectives on that, and some are more preoccupied with the “international law and constitutional law” issue of

you think it’s about human rights, you think it’s about self-determination, how do we even start the conversation? Of course, with education.

It can be hard to know what to talk about at the table if you don’t have the vocabulary and the education to understand who the players are, what the legislation means, what the legal contexts are. It really comes back to education, and it is about developing and training leadership within Indigenous communities so that they are rooted within their own Indigenous systems and can play the game of the Western legal system. We often talk about sovereignty from below and sovereignty from above. I know in the U.S. context, we have the nation within a nation, the Native American tribes are quasi-sovereign nations going back to the treaties. And so we take sovereignty and self-determination very seriously, and I know others do as well. But depending on their nation-states, the sovereign laws of the land, many Indigenous peoples are just completely invisible and erased without any sense of rights or self-determination. So again, it’s so hard to speak universally about something that is so locally adapted and unique and contextual.

Melissa Nelson: Indigenous people interpreted UN-DRIP as responsibilities to their homelands to self-identity and their selfdetermination. So that Indigenous communities in the Arctic and the Amazon, right here in Phoenix and the Salt River Valley, how are these people being impacted and affected by outsiders’ decisions, whether it’s agriculture or mining or a freeway development project? Do they have “free prior and informed consent” to self-determine if and how they want to interface with that project?

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Because for 500 years in this country, native peoples have not had their self-determination and decisions respected about how they’re impacted by extractivism or so-called development. That is something that I hear from Indigenous peoples all across the world, that they want to say, “These are our lands and we have a right and responsibility to decide what happens to them.”

laws and make rules and decisions. It’s clearly an Indigenous thing. What is the mix-up there? And where I saw this, when I went to law school in Nigeria, was the distinction between customary law and the “received” law. You have your case, you can go to the customary courts, and you can go to the high court. And they’re still valid decisions, and there’s no need to say, well, courts or formal institutions are for white people. The impressive Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) degree at the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program at the University of Arizona offers candidates an intellectually challenging opportunity for academic specialization. This certainly needs to become more mainstream.

Faheem Hussain: You talked about the importance of education, and education in a way that helps the people in focus to salvage their mind. To have the agency to do this, not to be overwhelmed and shunned by others. Or not to have so much of a Western education that we start hating ourselves and berating our own culture that has been going on for so many years. If that’s the case, how would you imagine that type of education that can eventually help us to empower that new breed or new generation of decision-makers?

Faheem Hussain: I feel like it has some sort of parallel to traditional medicines and Western medicines, and where in many

Timi Aganaba: It is kind of figuring out they clearly have tools of decision-making. A lot of education about how many of the practices of decision-making and governance that these communities have are the tools that we use in society. It’s not that it’s a “white” thing to have

There’s a great saying by a traditional elder from Canada who talks about “two-eyes seeing,” and we’re using that a lot in sciences where you see with both the Western scientific lens and the Indigenous knowledge lens, but it’s the same thing with law. I think it’s important that when we make any decisions we have to open up that there are these other communities that have other systems of knowledge, and usually it’s in their own languages.

15 cases Western medicine became the norm. And if you do not practice that, then you are actually not a doctor. But the traditional medicine had been there for thousands of years.

Melissa Nelson: I think the question of local and global or universalizing or mainstreaming is a really fascinating question. The whole question of intellectual property rights probably needs to be addressed at some point in this conversation. Some people will only do their Indigenous customary law and do not believe in intellectual property rights and don’t want to use copyrights or trademarks or Western mechanisms. Others feel like they have to use those Western mechanisms because some of their medicinal knowledge, for example, has been exploited by pharmaceutical companies that have made millions of dollars with no benefits brought back to the local people whose traditional knowledge was the basis.

There’s a great Deninu K’ue scholar, Nicole Redvers, who wrote a paper on the Indigenous determinants of planetary health. This is an attempt to kind of universalize the concept of planetary health from Indigenous worldviews

Melissa Nelson: It’s not to completely replace what’s here. It’s to just be on equal footing. Law, medicine, politics, religion. There’s a full other universe of Indigenous epistemologies and worldviews that have their own legal systems, scientific systems, medical systems, government systems. The United States was founded in some part on the Iroquois Confederacy, the great Six Nations, because these six different tribes were able to work together as a unified confederacy after conflict. This idea of a United States of different entities cooperatively working together in a shared governance structure with semi-autonomy, semisovereignty, but also a larger governing system.

I just want to bring in and advocate for the importance of protecting, preserving and revitalizing linguistic diversity and Indigenous languages, because contained within the different languages are these different ways of knowing and learning and being where the legal concepts are, where the scientific understandings are, where the governance systems are. There is a big move by Indigenous peoples globally, working with conservation organizations, to protect biocultural diversity using Indigenous knowledge systems as well as Western science.

Timi Aganaba: If we’re saying that these things need to live together, we’re talking about inclusion. And if we’re talking about inclusion, we can talk about what the challenges are. Why is it not happening? My experience comes from negotiations of the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform as part of the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change. Indigenous peoples have been trying to formally get into the climate discussions for decades. And then finally, they got this. And it is revolutionary because they are not an official actor in international law. The first question I had was, “Who was “Indigenous” there? Who can speak for Indigenous?” However, what fascinated me was the next day, going into the negotiation room on the agenda item “research and systematic observation.” They were “inadvertently” watering down the impact of what was being negotiated in the other room, adding language like “Indigneous perspectives where relevant.” I was in both those rooms, and I think I’m one of the few people to notice.

Melissa Nelson: Well, we want a viable regenerative future for all. As polarized as we are today, if you poll Americans, they will say, “Yeah, I want my grandchildren to have clean water and clean air and to be able to have food.” You know, all those basic values that we can all get behind. But how are we going to get there? And the equal distribution of those vital resources is a whole other issue.

and values. It’s not really technical or scientific knowledge per se, but it’s very important knowledge that can be useful as ethical frameworks. I think mainstreaming some of the Indigenous values, some of the sustainable practices, some of the behaviors is a positive move, but it’s much more about ethical issues than technical ones, in how people try to get along and restrain power and negative impact on the planet.

Timi Aganaba: What is knowledge or what is the value that is knowledge? Particularly in the context of the distinction between a public good and an intellectual property. There are some kinds of knowledge that we say are open to the world, right? Because everyone needs that knowledge to be able to exist. But, if the issue is that there’s a spectrum of people who feel certain ways, then what issue are we trying to solve?

Timi Aganaba: So my takeaway is essentially that everyone has something to contribute to the world being successful and operating. If there are things that we can learn from other communities or other societies, then we should figure out how we can leverage them and how to bring those perspectives to the table. And then, of course, when they are at the table and proffer solutions, not to water down their contributions in the other rooms!

Faheem Hussain: The other thing, which is very important, is the safe space to share. This idea of pluralism and safe space is so crucial. Here at ASU, we envision our College of Global Futures to be a start of a safe space, an intellectual safe space that can champion pluralism when it comes to intellectual ideas. I think, in this increasingly connected, hybrid digitized society of ours, we will have digital footprints in action trying to put the packages and the lived experiences we have in the physical world. Pluralism can help us to envision and design innovative things in a way that’s truly inclusive. That could be a destination that we all can pursue.

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Diane E. Pataki, Foundation Professor and Director of the School of Sustainability

Is tree planting in desert cities a climate solution or water waste?

Tree planting is a climate solution whose moment seems to have arrived. There are municipal programs all over the world to plant a billion trees, national programs to plant a billion trees, and global programs to plant a billion trees in order to slow the pace of climate change through biological carbon sequestration.

At the same time, climate change is reducing the availability of water needed to support trees in dry regions such as the southwestern U.S, especially Arizona State University’s home metropolitan area of Phoenix. In these areas, trees and forests can’t grow without supplemental water, creating tradeoffs between nature-based solutions to climate change and water conservation programs. In Arizona and elsewhere, some have suggested that planting trees in dryland cities may be a luxury we can’t afford in a time of severe drought.

Climate change makes cities consider adaptation versus mitigation

So, what does science have to say about tree planting in dryland and desert cities? Is tree planting actually a climate solution in the Southwest and similar regions? Or should dry cities cut back on tree planting to save water? The answer depends on whether the goal is to mitigate or avoid climate change, or to help cities and their residents adapt to rising temperatures.

Trees influence both local climate and the human experience of climate, which is called thermal comfort. Trees lower air temperature at and near the ground surface through shading effects, and also through the cooling effects of water evaporated at the leaf surface, which acts as a heat sink. The shading effect of trees also lowers the mean radiant temperature —

Natural forests cover more than a third of the global land area, so they are very important in regulating global climate. Cities, on the other hand, cover less than 1% of the land surface. But greenhouse gas emissions are highly concentrated in cities — so concentrated that within cities, the amount of carbon taken up through photosynthesis is a small fraction of the amount emitted through fossil fuel combustion. For example, per unit of land area, Los Angeles emits more than ten times the amount of carbon fixed by natural forests in photosynthesis

However, the situation is very different when considering options for urban climate adaptation, and for helping people cope with rising temperatures. In this case, the effect of urban trees can be quite significant.

forests have continuous tree cover, but there is little available space in cities to reach the tree densities found in natural forests. While extensive tree planting efforts at large regional and continental scales may have an impact on the global carbon cycle, it’s unlikely that municipal tree planting programs will remove enough carbon from the atmosphere through photosynthesis to lower the concentration of CO2 . And in the end, we must lower atmospheric CO2 concentrations to avoid climate change.

Let’s start with the science of climate mitigation in the form of biological carbon sequestration. Trees are made up of about 50 percent carbon, which they obtain from the atmosphere through photosynthesis. When it comes to carbon sequestration in trees, what you see is what you get. Larger trees store more carbon, and the more trees there are on land, the more atmospheric carbon is locked up in forests.

These numbers do not bode very well for planting urban trees as a climate mitigation measure. Natural

a measure of how people experience temperature based on the exchange of solar radiation. You already know how much cooler it feels to stand in the shade of a tree rather than in the full sun, and that effect will be increasingly important as cities get hotter. The more cities make shade and evaporative cooling available, the more urban residents will be able to tolerate the climate without air conditioning.

But what about the water use of trees? Will we have enough water in desert cities to plant and maintain urban forests in future climates?

are differences among tree species, but for the most part, urban forests can be sustained with a much lower water allocation than current household water use.

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Research has shown that the answer to this question is yes. Outdoor landscapes are responsible for the majority of household water use in southwestern U.S. cities. However, most outdoor water use in these cities is attributable to lawns, not trees. For example, in Los Angeles 70% of landscape water use comes from lawns . Lawns have a much higher leaf area than trees, and they’re also very shallowly rooted, so they have to be irrigated very often. Deeply rooted trees are comparatively efficient in using water. There

Municipal tree planting programs can be particularly effective for climate adaptation by focusing on the locations where cooling will have the most impact, such as pedestrian walkways and bike paths, bus stops, transportation routes and sites that shade buildings. Some of these applications will require more research — for example, the influence of trees on indoor air temperatures has not been directly measured in many studies. But overall, the current evidence shows that urban tree planting can be a climate solution in dryland and water scarce cities, even as water conservation becomes increasingly important.

Evolution of Decision Theater

A more active, nimble tool of engagement for researchers and communities

When ASU first opened the doors of the Decision Theater (DT), the idea was to provide data visualization at the highest and fastest performance level to help stakeholders not only examine options for pathways to solutions, but also nimbly adjust the variables. DT has since worked with partners as varied as the National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Helios Foundation, Conservation International and adidas on projects addressing megacity disaster assistance, land degradation, water and leadership training through game-based simulation. Now, Senior Global Futures Scientists are looking at the next evolution of DT and how it can use augmented intelligence in order to become an active participant instead of merely a data tool.

Patricia Solís is executive director of the Knowledge Exchange for Resilience, a campuswide effort to link multisector community needs with research innovations in building community resilience. The effort is funded by a generous grant from the Virginia G. Piper Trust, and engages a multidisciplinary team of community and academic fellows, design scholars, research professors, and full-time staff and graduate student assistants. Solís is an associate research professor of geography in the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning.

Manfred Laubichler is the director of the School of Complex Adaptive Systems and the Global Biosocial Complexity Initiative. He is the Global Futures Professor and President’s Professor of theoretical biology and history of biology. His work focuses on evolutionary novelties from genomes to knowledge systems, the structure of evolutionary theory and the evolution of knowledge.

What is the purpose of Decision Theater?

Manfred Laubichler: I see Decision Theater as a core technology for global futures because it allows us to investigate and advance societal will, which is needed to accomplish necessary transformations. In a way, the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory’s success crucially depends on activating societies to engage in the kind of transformations of those complex problems that we are part of and that we need to change. The issue of societies contributing to change is, of course, a tricky one, because societal change happens no matter what — and it generally doesn’t happen in a very clear cut and directed way. DT, as a technology, allows us to bring together our model-based scientific understanding of the problem and engage with societies or stakeholders in such a way that they learn how to think in terms

other stakeholders who are affected, at every step of the way. At the Knowledge Exchange for Resilience (KER), we’re trying to create the space for knowledge exchange to happen so that we can liberate the data that community members have that is not typically used in science. Those inputs will inform our models and help us innovate because now we know what situations our decision-makers are facing and what kinds of data they hold on to, which in turn helps us improve our models and perspectives. We’ve learned a lot about the way that communities work by partnering with them around specific projects regarding how decision-making works. We’ve joined with DT, as part of our work, to understand better how those decisions get made, how we can access the data and insights that communities have and that we have, and put those in play together to really come around to some solutions.

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Patricia Solís: The biggest challenges that we’re going to face in our global futures are going to be extremely complex. We need to have all of society working together, especially the public university. Arizona State University in particular is designed to create research and public value. We need to engage the public in every step of the process, including what I call the “first mile,” which helps us to determine what questions matter the most. What are the questions that we need to engage around first? If we’re going to really focus in on where we can make a difference, we need to be engaged with community members, decision-makers and

of complex systems transformation. In turn, members of society can tell us what’s missing in the model so that we can refine the process. Through this act of co-creation we can become partners in achieving necessary transformations.

this in an engaged way — we can’t just sit back and “do science” without understanding and giving the opportunity for input and feedback. One of the most important assets that this new configuration of DT will give us is the ability not just to share data, but to share the models and algorithms around that data. I think we can accelerate our work tremendously. We come across the same kinds of problems in different situations. With the new configuration, we will be able to access a suite of tools that we’ve built together and reconfigure it for different questions that come up. Especially when we’re looking at the future, a lot of those tools need to be scenario-based and forward looking. They need to be predictive — not just descriptive of what is happening right now in the world, but helping us get to a vision of what it could be.

Laubichler: Building on what Patricia said, DT captures the Global Futures Laboratory’s five core spaces: Discovery, Learning, Solutions, Networks and Engagement. It’s a core facility for global futures given its transformative potential to imagine possible future scenarios in the context of complex systems. A major part of the new version, DT 3.0, will be to broaden its use. In the past, DT was focused on providing an infrastructure for decision-making, bringing in a relatively narrowly defined group of central decision-makers into the facility. Some researchers, specifically Patricia, are already using DT in a much more engaged way, where it isn’t just top clients who want to have a solution that they can then run with. It is much more engaged and open-ended. What the DT hasn’t comprehensively done, because it was facility-based, is be part of scientific culture and the scientific core. When you think about what the scientific core of the Global Futures Laboratory is, it is understanding and modeling big transformations of social, technological and environmental systems. But that kind of model structure has not been part of the DT expertise. It is a distributed expertise within the laboratory,

Solís: Decisions that affect our global future are not just going to be the decisions of the highest-level decision-makers. We all make decisions every single day, about our lives, the communities we live in, and our workplaces, families, relationships and purchases. We’re all making decisions. Collectively, that has an impact on what global futures look like in this complex system. It’s important that we’re doing

Laubichler: DT has the power to change the way science interacts with society. At one extreme, the purpose of science is to generate pure knowledge and scientists don’t care about its applications. At the other end of the spectrum, science really engages in terms of citizen science. The new version of DT will enable us to cover a large part of that continuum. What has worked in the past is that you bring some select people — whether it’s a client or some small group of stakeholders — into DT, where scientists and researchers help them arrive at a decision through models or data visualization. That’s one data point in that spectrum. But, as we liberate DT from its facility and bring it out into the community, it can really become an interesting research tool, where one can uncover — as Patricia was saying — what people care about. But researchers must go to the people, into pubs and other locations, and engage them. And you can do it with a simple laptop. We can use this version of the DT to break down the barrier between science and the public. It’s truly democratic to go out and engage people in the whole process of discovery and science. If we don’t do that, we will continue to lose credibility as scientists.

The KER website already is a place for people to go and find data, but with this future iteration of DT, you’re adding another access point through which society can receive information in a more visual way and potentially help drive or shape improved futures. How will that work?

It seems that we are now talking about Decision Theater as being an active participant of the process. How does that impact how you are approaching it as a user and as a facilitator of its use?

which we have to bring more closely together with DT. To do so, DT 3.0 must become a focal lens of the laboratory where we combine and bring together our different expertise in modeling. That will allow the laboratory to become a clearinghouse for understanding how different, interconnected systems actually change and bring it to the relevant and affected parties. It’s not a one-way street.

Solís: Decision Theater is one of the reasons that I loved the idea of coming to ASU in the first place. I was just fascinated by it. But I think tools like it are often thought of as “the last mile.” We’ve got all these models, and we need to reach out to those who use our work. But typically, it doesn’t result in the actual decisions being made. That’s why we have been focusing on the first

mile and getting engagement throughout the whole process. The first mile means you get the question right from the beginning. It also means that we access datasets that other researchers would never have thought of using. Sometimes trying to deal with data that isn’t built for scientific purposes, and trying to translate it into meaningful indicators or models, is really messy. This kind of data is everywhere. It’s in organizations that provided support through the pandemic, or in housing information or transportation data. If you can access that data, as well as the insights of the stakeholders who curate and cultivate it, you have a whole new world of opportunities to be able to build robust, meaningful models. It’s easy to just go with what’s out there, such as U.S. Census data, to answer questions that the literature is asking of us. There’s a place for that. But if we’re really going to be influencing decision-making and trying to move this needle fast enough for a complex, global future, we need a different process. By zeroing in from the very first mile, we can better determine the questions and the data available to bring to the scientific process.

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As you talk about asking the right question from the outset and understanding the datasets out there, how do you accomplish that in a global world? We are working on global futures, not regional futures. How does DT 3.0 better take into consideration cultural factors to help make holistic decisions for stakeholders?

Laubichler: From a strictly scientific point of view, global futures point us to something science, by and large, has ignored. We live in what’s called the Anthropocene. What that means is that we can no longer understand nature independent of our actions. The whole scientific epistemology is based on the distinction between the observer and the observed, so that based on having an objective data set about what we observe, we can create an understanding of that world independent from us as the observer. That no longer holds because in the Anthropocene, we live in a planetary system that is primarily affected by human action. What we need to develop as a new scientific methodology is a way of modeling the planetary system together with the effects of our actions. This is hard because it hasn’t been done. Now, the way to get into this is through what Patricia described as the first mile because this is a way to understand and appreciate that it is the diverse, local human activities that define the problem, and then scaling up to the global scale. DT serves as a way that helps us get into this necessary transformation of the science of global futures. To transform planetary systems, we must factor in — and be able to steer — societal inputs and societal consequences.

Solís: Exactly, as Manfred said about scaling up, our science and our models need to be designed in such a way that we can look at multiple scales. Every decision-maker has a jurisdiction, they have a space in which their actions take effect. For example, the boundaries of the state versus the boundaries of the county

versus the boundaries of the watershed. The governing authorities in these jurisdictions all have different spheres of influence. We need to be able to navigate through all that complexity because different decision-makers have different influences. If we can get the question right, in the beginning, we understand who can make this decision and what they need to know to make good or evidence-based decisions. That helps us navigate scale across futures.

Laubichler: What Patricia just said is the blueprint for the science of global futures. We have to grow our understanding of large-scale dynamics. Let’s take temperature as an example. From a complex systems point of view, if this variable changes, what are its consequences? What are the policies, what are the decisions? What is the earth-systems science dimension and the known dynamics of heat and temperature change? What are the consequences for health? What are the consequences for livability in certain areas? What are the consequences for migration? What are the consequences for the whole built environment? So, we want to build an integrated systemic model that captures all this and helps target the intervention points in that system. This is a complex systems perspective geared toward identifying the levers in the system.

What are some of the proof points to demonstrate that this new DT approach will work? What do you see as the potential long-term successes?

going to see as temperatures rise. One of the things I think we could do for the world is to improve understanding and mitigate some of the impacts of heat effects across all our systems. One of the things that I see as proof of success would be if we could really develop different kinds of modeling around housing. Heat affects people where they live, where they sleep, where they reside. It affects the roads that we drive on and our city infrastructure. And heat affects our health. Right now, all those systems are really siloed. I have high hopes for Decision Theater that we can start to integrate across datasets so we could say when the temperatures rise, we expect these different impacts. This is how much it costs; this is how much the solutions will cost. This will be how much we can mitigate, and this is the price tag for all those changes, to optimize and mobilize action. It might seem simple, but we are not yet able to answer some fundamental questions in a way that affects decision-making. If we can come up with one or two key decisions that can really attenuate the effect of heat, then DT will have been hugely successful.

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Solís: At KER, we’ve been working a lot on heat resilience, the one multiplier threat that we have here in the Phoenix metro area that I think we’re going to see reverberate across the globe. Arizona is at ground zero for changes that we’re

Laubichler: We need to restructure the organization of DT, and we need to invest quite a lot of money into DT because it has been under resourced for a while. There is clearly an opportunity for the philanthropy community to invest in this solution-oriented technology. But the most important change is that we need to bring DT into the core of the science of global futures. We need the Global Futures’ Scientists and Scholars Network to look at their research interests and activities, and put them through the conceptual frame of DT 3.0. We must invite our scholars and researchers to really make use of DT 3.0 because that is the way that they can have real impact. We also need to structure the technical and modeling expertise to build this kind of integrative systems perspective that would allow us to see all the ripple effects of a potential change.

Laubichler: Extreme events are part of the normal variation in the system, except that they are now much more frequent and much larger. We can directly attribute that kind of amplitude and frequency to the Anthropocene. For the areas that are currently afflicted, the question is, how do you rebuild? What decisions do you have to make, and what tools do you have to give those local communities, to take that unfortunate, traumatic experience and channel it into productive, anticipatory action for adaptation? In the future, we should be in a position to go to Mississippi and set up a DT event with local decision-makers and experts in the community, and say, “Let’s bring together all that you just experienced, and determine what we can anticipate the potential future scenarios will be and establish a strategy of rebuilding the infrastructure in a way that would allow you to deal with these events.” In my vision, DT comes in after the Federal Emergency Management Agency leaves. There is an immediate urgency to distribute water and those kinds of things, but generally once FEMA leaves, those communities are left to their own devices. And what they do is generally rebuild as they did before. That’s a pattern we must break because what we saw this summer is basically every single square inch of this planet experiencing a climate-induced crisis.

Solís: Indeed we do, Manfred. And what are the urgent solutions, the response solutions, the incremental solutions and also the multiplied solutions? Like heat has a multiplier effect, you can find some synergy in solutions, too, if you’re putting this in the right kind of modeling environment. You could find an optimal solution that solves more than one problem at one time.

Solís: The only thing that I would add from the knowledge exchange perspective is I think we also have to perfect that vision of being open to the community, so that our community really sees our university and its experts as something they can access, something that they can be part of.

The Global Futures Laboratory recognizes the next 10 years as a decisive decade for action. We’ve talked very conceptually about DT, but pragmatically, what does it take to get to DT 3.0?

Solís: I think DT 3.0 needs to help us make up for lost time

A core purpose of the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory is to be anticipatory, to avoid challenges and problems. At this moment in time, we have deadly flooding in Pakistan and in Mississippi. Climate change is a likely culprit, but we’re also seeing complete destruction and breakdown of the infrastructure in these two disparate, populated areas. How can DT help prevent similar disasters in the future?

A new school dedicated to the future of the planet’s largest biome

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The Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory may be headquartered in the most biologically diverse desert in the world — the Sonoran Desert — but we are still part of a planet with a surface that is 70% water. We cannot develop a comprehensive picture of our planet and its health without understanding its oceans. Oceans play a vital role in the dynamics of Earth’s systems and provide critical services. They store about 90% of the heat produced by increasing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere and sequester CO2 produced by burning fossil fuels, as well as providing ecosystem services, food, transportation, commerce routes, raw materials, employment and recreational opportunities.

There is no thriving future without a thriving ocean. Humanity has always intuitively known that as go the oceans, so goes societal health. To meet this challenge, the Global Futures Laboratory has launched the School of Ocean Futures as an integral part of its College of Global Futures. Scientists and scholars in the school will serve local and global communities through exploration, discovery and knowledge development at the intersection of oceans and society, along with the development of educational programs. Research programs are currently underway and educational degree programs are expected to launch in fall 2024.

The School of Ocean Futures will include both undergraduate and graduate degree programs that will connect with the School of Sustainability, the School for the Future of Innovation in Society and the School of Complex Adaptive Systems within the College of Global Futures to enable

unique learning and training opportunities. It also will have close connections to ASU’s School of Life Sciences, the School of Earth and Space Exploration, and the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, among others. Through transdisciplinary efforts, these academic programs will prepare students to tackle complex problems, including altered planetary systems, plastics and nutrient pollution, climate change and rising sea levels, overfishing, damage to coral reefs, destruction of biodiversity and more.

The new school, which is the fourth in the College of Global Futures, will expand our capacity to study Earth systems holistically. It will address the fundamental dynamics of the ocean as part of the Earth system, as well as its response to human pressures ranging from overfishing to pollution to climate change. The school, together with the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences, the Hawai’ibased activities of the Center for Global Discovery and Conservation Science, and the Pacific Regional Integrated Sciences and Assessments (Pacific RISA) research center in Hawai’i, will establish ASU as a leader in field-based ocean research and learning opportunities. Students will have the chance to take classes and conduct field studies in Arizona, Bermuda and Hawai’i.

To meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world, we must have insight into all of the interconnected systems of our planet. We cannot implement scalable solutions to pressing, complex problems without fully engaging in the systems that represent more than two-thirds of the planet’s surface. Oceans are not just the world’s largest ecosystem; they are one of the leading indicators of our planetary health and wellness. The School of Ocean Futures is a critical and compelling extension of our mission to shape tomorrow, today.

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critical and compelling extension of our The School of Ocean Futures is a mission to shape tomorrow, today.

The Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory™ is a unit of the ASU Knowledge Enterprise

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by ASU Knowledge Enterprise. © 2022 Arizona Board of Regents. All rights reserved. 09/2022

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