ECOPAS Suva Conference, 6-9 Dec 2013


Restoring the human to climate change in Oceania

Download: Suva Conference Poster
Download: Suva Conference Program

IN THE NEWS (The Fiji Times Online):

‘Inaugural ECOPAS climate change conference a success’

‘The human factor of climate change’

‘Use of art to tell our climate story’


The people of the low-lying islands of the Pacific are among the most vulnerable to the onset of climate change. They have to deal with rising temperatures and sea levels, acidification of the ocean, changes in rainfall patterns and extreme weather. In order to survive, Islanders seek solutions on a daily basis. Many are now faced with the possibility that they may have to abandon their ancestral homelands and relocate. But where can they go? What must they give up in order to be accepted by new hosts? And what will they do with the bones of their ancestors?

This conference will focus on culture, traditional wisdom, climate science and adaptation in Oceania and what it means to be human in a changing climate. For the islanders of the Pacific, climate change is an immediate reality to be responded to. Their responses involve knowledge and skills developed over thousands of years of living with changing, often volatile Oceanic environments.

The scope of this conference is broad. It opens with the world premiere of an Oceanian cultural production that explores the human dimensions of climate change in ways that will entertain and move you to action. Through music, dance, and drama, the human in us will be explored and unravelled.

Featured speakers, panel discussions, poster sessions, literary events, film screenings and many opportunities for informal sharing and interaction will follow. This is an interdisciplinary conference that will forge and foster new connections among the social sciences, humanities, natural sciences and indigenous knowledges of Oceania.

Organized by the University of the South Pacific and the National Research Institute of Papua New Guinea on behalf of the European Consortium for Pacific Studies (ECOPAS), this conference is part of a three-year network project funded by the European Union through its Seventh Framework programme. The ECOPAS Consortium includes two Pacific and four European partner institutions.

For further details on the conference, contact ECOPAS

at the University of the South Pacific:

Dr. Joeli Veitayaki:

Professor Elisabeth Holland: