Wednesday, March 5, 2008

One of the great things about being involved in organising a conference is the range of things you get to debate (like why people do or don't contribute to a blog!). More seriously, at the last conference committee meeting we were discussing what it means to be a green conference and what can (and should) we do to be more green. Is there a trade-off between cost and environmental sustainability? If there are additional costs are individuals or their employing organisations prepared to pay that cost? How much analysis must we do to be sure what we are doing is sustainable? Would people pay for carbon credits if we analysed the carbon cost of conference? Would you rather have speakers in person from overseas or would you be happy with their virtual presence?

What is your view on this and any other aspect of sustainability?

What else? Well, the programme structure is pretty well finalised and there will be more information about this available very shortly and the call for papers is also about to be released. Day by day the conference is becoming more fully realised - we look forward to lots of proposals for papers and a wide range of other sessions.

3 comments:

moira clunie said...

For a greener (and cheaper!) conference, how about 100% vegan catering? The meat eaters probably wouldn't notice & the vegetarians would love you forever. Vegan food at past LIANZA conferences has been horrible and nutritionally inadequate (e.g. a plate of green salad) - speaking for myself, proper vegan food would keep me at the conference venue during lunch breaks and full of energy for the afternoon sessions.

(Why is veganism green? The UN says "The livestock sector emerges as one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global." Eating vegan has more positive impact on carbon emissions than driving a hybrid car.)

Courtney Johnston said...

How about making conference bags (and their contents) an option that people can choose not to receive on the registration form?

Or (and?) using recyled paper and vegetable inks for the conference book etc, and have recyling bins around the venue.

Chelsea said...

Encourage exhibitors to reduce the distribution of fliers and brochures. Most trade stands have internet access, so why not just have them email you/email yourself links to their information online. We always amass tons of paper leaflets at conference, and I don't know about others, but I rarely go back and read through them (unless my plane is delayed and I get bored).