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IDSVA is proud to announce the 2024 Commencement Speaker, Bruce C. Glavovic

Bruce C. Glavovic, 2024 IDSVA Commencement Speaker.
Bruce C. Glavovic will receive an honorary PhD at the 2024 Commencement Ceremony at the Morgan Library in New York City on April 21, 2024.

His address, "One Earth, One Life," will invite you to reflect on your journey and reimagine how you might chart your path into the future in turbulent times.

Your choices shape our future. They shape our world.

How do you understand your place on Earth? How might you live a purposeful and meaningful life? Only you can answer these questions.

Bruce shares his story of wrestling with such questions. Growing up in Apartheid South Africa presented confronting choices in his personal and professional life and shaped his pathway as an academic. Inspired by Indigenous Peoples and cultures, he works in support of local communities to navigate the impacts of climate and global environmental change.

He explains how three foundation stones guide his life: (1) Reverence for the Earth and the species we share this planet with; (2) empathy and a duty of care for our fellow citizens and community; and (3) a fierce commitment to peace and emancipation for all.

What foundation stones matter to you? How will you navigate the turbulence of our times as you chart your pathways into the future?

Bruce C. Glavovic holds degrees in Economics and Agricultural Economics, Environmental Science, and Urban and Environmental Planning. He was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to do his PhD in environmental dispute resolution at the University of Virginia (USA). Over the last four decades, Bruce has worked as a policy advisor, consultant planner, and academic in South Africa, the USA, and New Zealand.

Bruce’s research centres on how to make societal choices in turbulent times. He is internationally recognised for critical applied scholarship on: (i) Adapting to climate change; (ii) natural hazards planning, vulnerability, and resilience governance; and (iii) coastal governance, and coastal and ocean equity, justice, poverty eradication, conflict, and risk reduction.

In 2022, Bruce received the New Zealand Planning Institute’s Distinguished Service Award and the Individual Research Award from Massey’s College of Humanities and Social Sciences. In 2023, he was listed in Stanford University’s World’s Top 2% Scientists and received the prestigious Distinguished Scientist award by the Chinese Academy of Sciences that same year.

Bruce has held key science leadership roles, including Coordinating Lead Author for the Nexus Report by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (2022-2024), the IPCC’s Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (2017-2019) and Working Group II Report (2019-2022). He was Co-Chair of Future Earth Coasts (2016-2020) and elected a member of its Academy. He is currently co-Editor-in-Chief of Ocean & Coastal Management.

Bruce led the team that produced South Africa’s White Paper for Sustainable Coastal Development (2000), which culminated in the world’s first Integrated Coastal Management Act (2008). He authored guidance on community-based coastal hazard risk reduction for UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission to be implemented by UN members in 2024. His work has been reported in online and print news media (e.g., New York Times, Washington Post), social media, radio (e.g., ABC, CBC, RNZ) and TV (e.g., TVNZ and BBC News).

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