70 episodes


There is a growing recognition across the world of the urgency of tackling a range of difficult, complex and inter-related issues that impact human wellbeing.

These issues include food, energy and water security, the spread of infectious diseases, developments in technology and medicine, and climate change.

The series, delivered by distinguished speakers, focuses on the contribution academia can make to understanding and addressing these global challenges.

Our Changing World The University of Edinburgh

    • Science


There is a growing recognition across the world of the urgency of tackling a range of difficult, complex and inter-related issues that impact human wellbeing.

These issues include food, energy and water security, the spread of infectious diseases, developments in technology and medicine, and climate change.

The series, delivered by distinguished speakers, focuses on the contribution academia can make to understanding and addressing these global challenges.

    • video
    Julia Marton-Lefèvre - The Promise of 2015: Hopes for a New Environmental Enlightenment

    Julia Marton-Lefèvre - The Promise of 2015: Hopes for a New Environmental Enlightenment

    Julia Marton-Lefèvre, environmentalist and academic, delivers the final lecture in the 2015 Our Changing World series.

    This lecture is also part of our Enlightenment Lecture series.

    In this lecture Julia Marton-Lefèvre will compare the profound changes that took place in the 18th century European Enlightenment, emphasizing reason rather than tradition, with the need for a new enlightenment to face the stark challenges posed by an unprecedented loss of biodiversity, a rapidly changing climate and increasing inequality among nations and individuals.

    Recorded on 24 November 2015 at the University of Edinburgh's George Square Lecture Theatre.

    • 1 hr 17 min
    • video
    Prof. Emilios Avgouleas - From Speculative Finance to Sustainable Finance

    Prof. Emilios Avgouleas - From Speculative Finance to Sustainable Finance

    Professor Emilios Avgouleas, Chair in Banking Law, delivers the eighth lecture in the 2015 Our Changing World series, entitled From Speculative Finance to Sustainable Finance.

    In this lecture, Professor Avgouleas will discuss in a free thinking mode, a number of possible solutions to the seemingly intractable problem of how to turn speculative finance into sustainable investment.

    Recorded on 17 November 2015 at the University of Edinburgh's George Square Lecture Theatre.

    • 1 hr 19 min
    • video
    Dr Meriwether Wilson - Ocean Futures: Balancing Blue Growth and Conservation

    Dr Meriwether Wilson - Ocean Futures: Balancing Blue Growth and Conservation

    Dr Meriwether Wilson, Lecturer in Marine Science and Policy, delivers the seventh lecture in the 2015 Our Changing World series, entitled "Ocean Futures: Balancing Blue Growth and
    Conservation".

    This talk explores how the concepts of 'blue capital', blue growth and ecosystem services, which are typically anthropocentric, can be viewed with a broader interpretation in which the diverse marine species resident in our global oceans can be fully taken into account as well.

    Recorded on 10 November 2015 at the University of Edinburgh's George Square Lecture Theatre.

    • 1 hr 19 min
    • video
    Prof. Peter Higgins and Prof. Charles Hopkins - UN Sustainable Development Goals

    Prof. Peter Higgins and Prof. Charles Hopkins - UN Sustainable Development Goals

    Professor Peter Higgins, Personal Chair in Outdoor and Environmental Education, and Professor Charles Hopkins, UNESCO Chair of Education for Sustainable Development, deliver the sixth lecture in the 2015 Our Changing World series.

    By October 2015 world leaders will have adopted the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that will guide global development until 2030. In implementing these SDGs, Learning for Sustainability (LfS), will play a key role.

    This lecture will reflect on global LfS developments, and consider LfS in the UN SDGs and the Global Action Programme from a Scottish and UK perspective.

    Recorded on 3 November 2015 at the University of Edinburgh's George Square Lecture Theatre.

    • 1 hr 24 min
    • video
    Dr Andrew Kerr - Reshaping Our World With New Energy Systems

    Dr Andrew Kerr - Reshaping Our World With New Energy Systems

    Dr Andrew Kerr, Executive Director, Edinburgh Centre on Carbon Innovation, delivers the fifth lecture in the 2015 Our Changing World series.

    All countries face difficult choices when seeking to deliver clean, affordable and secure supplies of energy to their citizens. Recent years have seen extraordinary – disruptive – changes and innovation in many aspects of energy generation and use around the world (in markets, technologies, regulations, social acceptance, and geopolitics).

    This lecture will showcase these important changes – and how they impact on us in Scotland and elsewhere around the world.

    Recorded on 27 October 2015 at the University of Edinburgh's George Square Lecture Theatre.

    • 1 hr 16 min
    • video
    Prof. Stephen Hillier - Fertility Futures in a Changing World

    Prof. Stephen Hillier - Fertility Futures in a Changing World

    Emeritus Professor Stephen Hillier delivers the fourth lecture in the 2015 Our Changing World series entitled, Fertility Futures in a Changing World.

    As total population increases fertility (number of children per woman) falls and expectations change, especially in more developed regions of the world.

    Medical, educational and societal norms encourage people to control how many children they have and when to have them.

    Options are opened by assisted reproductive technology based on in-vitro fertilisation (IVF).

    In this lecture, Professor Hillier looks at controversial genome engineering tools. These tools raise the spectre of non-therapeutic ‘gene enhancement’ beyond strictly therapeutic gene repair. Might they prove useful? Would they be acceptable?

    Recorded on Tuesday 20 October at the University of Edinburgh's George Square Lecture Theatre.

    • 1 hr 17 min

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