Beijing, 24 July 2012 Interest for the WRF Beijing conference, to be held October 21-23, 2012, is higher than for any of the WRF’s before. The number of submitted papers for the scientific sessions is more than twice as many as last year, when the conference was held in Davos. The same goes for the current status of registrations. There is also a large number of new partner organisations that will be actively present in Beijing by organising and facilitating special workshops. This was stated by the organising committee, after its recent meeting, held in Beijing, in the beginning of July.
Far over 200 scientific abstracts have been received, from all regions of the world, and they are, according to the chairs of the Scientific Committee, prof. Suojiang Zhang, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Institute of Process Engineering (IPE) and prof. Christian Ludwig, Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, Switzerland, of “good quality”. Some authors will need to work on the context, “how their paper fit in the overall themes of the conference”. The Scientific Committee has almost finished its work and authors will be notified in the weeks to come, whether their paper is accepted for oral session, for poster presentation or had to be rejected. However, for “very exceptional cases” abstracts can still be submitted, says prof. Ludwig, “we do not want to miss out extra-ordinary quality just because of self-imposed deadlines.”
Some ten workshops will be organised this year, of which many by new partners, including UNEP’s Regional Office for Asia Pacific (based in Bangkok), the UNEP/Wuppertal Institute Centre for Sustainable Consumption and Production CSCP, the Boston based Tellus Institute, the Finnish Koli Forum, and the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences. Empa and UNEP’s International Resource Panel are organising events just like in other years. CAS plans a workshop on the Circular Economy, resulting in a publication, to which prof. Dajian Zhu is expected to contribute. See here for a provisional list.
Highlights of the plenary program include the confirmed opening by the Chinese Minister for Environmental Protection, H.E. Zhou Shengxian. UNEP and UNIDO will send high level representatives. Switzerland will be represented by its State Secretary for the Environment, Bruno Oberle. The meeting will furthermore be addressed by the European Member of Parliament and rapporteur Resource Efficiency Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy.
Among the world-renowned scientists presenting their latest work in Beijing are the father of Industrial Ecology Tom Graedel, Nobel Prize winner Mohan Munasinghe, and other International Resource Panel members, such as Yuichi Moriguichi, University of Tokyo, as well as the Australian Sixth Wave of Innovation New York Times bestselling author James Moody, and Amory B. Lovins, Chairman and Chief Scientist, Rocky Mountain Institute.
Business will be represented by, among others the Chinese BROAD chairman, Yue Zhang (see here their famous YouTube video on building a 15 storey hotel in only 48 hours), Joachim Klink, Director Automotive and Aerospace of Hewlett-Packard, and a young innovative entrepreneur in life cycle architecture and sustainable construction, Hubert Rhomberg (Austria).
An international team of ten student reporters will like last year blog and report about the status of the discussions. Their team will be led by Aishwarya Nair and Mike McCullough from the University of Pennsylvania, and Claudio Ruch from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich. Student reporters are supported by Oikos International, Stiftung Mercator Schweiz and the WRF Secretariat.
The organisers urge participants to register early, not only to benefit from early bird discounts, but also to have sufficient time for acquiring a visa. Registration can be done here.
Feel free to browse through formal and less formal pictures of the organisation team meeting in Beijing on our Facebook page.