28th MAYDAY! Peace Conference Will Focus on Water

Posted on April 12th, 2008 by

“Troubled Water” is the theme for this year’s Gustavus Adolphus College MAYDAY! Peace Conference — an annual event devoted to a topic relating to human rights and social justice. This year’s conference is set for Wednesday, April 30 and individuals may register that day between 9-11 a.m. at Linner Lounge, located in the O.J. Johnson Student Union.

Ongoing processes of globalization have turned water from an abundant basic human resource to an increasingly scarce and polluted economic commodity. Examining this emerging crisis through the lens of social justice, the conference’s keynote addresses and workshops will survey and analyze the global plight of water, and propose practices and policies to ensure clean water for our collective futures.

The daylong conference will feature a morning and an afternoon keynote address by Aaron Wolf, an educator and research scientist from Oregon State University, and Wenonah Hauter, the executive director of Food and Water Watch, a non-profit consumer organization that works to ensure clean water and safe food. Wolf will speak at 10 a.m. in Christ Chapel, while Hauter will speak at 12:30 p.m. in Alumni Hall.

Wolf’s speech titled, “Conflict and Cooperation over Shared Waters: Lessons from Around the Globe,” will draw upon his research that focuses on issues relating transboundary water resources to political conflict and cooperation. Hauter’s speech is titled, “The Water Commons: Corporate Control or Democratic Governance.”

In addition to the feature presentations, there will also be several workshops for attendees to choose from as well as the Native Waters Exhibition in the Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library. The exhibition is provided by Project WET (Water Education for Teachers) and is designed to help both children and adults explore the importance of water in their lives.

Dating back to 1982, the annual MAYDAY! Peace Conference signifies the international distress call as well as a call to action. Previous conferences have focused on topics such as the necessity and effectiveness of international sanctions, global perspectives on the arms race, the tension between energy and the environment as a roadblock to peace, and the unfolding crisis of AIDS in Africa.

First established by Florence and the late Raymond Sponberg of North Mankato, Minn., the conference is free of charge and open to the public. To obtain additional information about the conference, e-mail collegerelations@gustavus.edu or call 507-933-7520.


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication JJ Akin


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