James Lovelock Centenary

The Future of Global Systems Thinking

The Global Systems Institute was delighted to host a conference on “The Future of Global Systems Thinking: Celebrating James Lovelock’s Centenary”, 29–31 July 2019 at the University of Exeter

Tim Lenton interviews James Lovelock

‘The Ages of Gaia’ by Banco de Gaia

The Lovelock PhD Scholarship Programme – support

The event celebrated the 100th birthday of James Lovelock by taking his pioneering approach to thinking about the Earth as a living system and exploring how we can apply it to help create a better future. The meeting addressed the history and current state of Earth system thinking and approaches to applying it. This included the concept of Gaia 2.0 which explores how humans may collectively add self-awareness to the Earth’s natural self-regulation systems. Gaia 2.0 is central to the Global Systems Institute which is a new interdisciplinary research, teaching, and engagement endeavour at the University of Exeter. All talks were held in plenary and were recorded. Please see the programme page or GSI playlist to view the individual talks.

Several events open to the general public were organised as part of the Lovelock Conference; click here for more information.

Lovelock’s quest to understand the whole earth system sparked the development of Earth System Science and stimulated a generation of environmental scientists. We invited all those who have been inspired or provoked by Lovelock’s work to come together to explore Earth system thinking, and how it can help a transition towards global sustainability.
The conference brought together representatives from across academic disciplines (science, engineering, social science, humanities and the arts) with organisations committed to transformations to environmental sustainability.

Jim Lovelock was interviewed and took part in a question-and-answer session as part of the overall meeting. There were keynote talks, panel discussions, break-out workshops and poster sessions for attendees to present their ideas. The conference took place at the University of Exeter.

Live Stream

Keep up with the conference and watch the talks live each day via our live stream link.

View Abstracts

View abstracts submitted to dedicated poster sessions that will run during the conference.

Conference Programme

This three-day meeting will address the history and current state of Earth system thinking and approaches to applying it.