Ten Years Hence lectures to focus on trends in green business

by Carol Elliott

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Sustainability is the primary focus of the 2009 Ten Years Hence Speaker Series offered by the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame, with experts discussing topics ranging from balancing society with nature to the McDonald’s Corp. response to sustainability issues.

The annual spring series of seven lectures runs Jan.16 (Friday) through April 17, with each talk taking place from 10:40 a.m. to 12:10 p.m. in the Jordan Auditorium at the Mendoza College. The lectures are free and open to the public.

Josh Dorfman, founder and chief executive officer (CEO) of eco-friendly furniture retailer Vivavi, will open the series with his talk,“Peering into the Green Future: The Trends and Innovations Forging an Abundant Society in Balance with Nature.”In addition to selling furniture and furnishings, Vivavi also provides other resources to consumers to aid in"green"living, with an emphasis on convenience and attractive designs as well as environmental concerns. Dorfman is known as"the Lazy Environmentalist"and has hosted a radio show and authored a book with that title.

Sustainability is a principal theme this academic year at Notre Dame and was the topic of the fourth annual Notre Dame Forum last fall.

The remainder of the 2009 Ten Years Hence schedule is as follows:

  • Jan. 23 : John Smart, president of the Acceleration Studies Foundation,“Foresight Development in a World ofAccelerating Change: Thoughts from an Evo Devo Futurist”* Feb. 6 : Patrick T. Mulva, vice president and controller of Exxon Mobil Corp., “Foresight Energy Sustainability-A View to 2030”* Feb. 13 : Jean Sweeney, vice president of environmental, health and safety operations of 3M,“Sustainability: Past, Present and Future from a Corporate View”* Feb. 20 : David Walker, president and CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation,“Keeping America Great”* March 20 : Jack Daly, senior vice president of corporate relations and chief communications officer for McDonald’s Corp.,“Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility: The McDonald’s Story”* April 17 : Edie Weiner, president and author, Weiner, Edrich, Brown Inc.,“FutureThink: How to Put Change in Perspective and See More Clearly What is Coming”

Created in 2005, Ten Years Hence is a signature series of the Mendoza College in which speakers are invited to forecast the major national and global trends in their areas of expertise.The series was developed to provide a sense of a"knowable future"in a dynamic world, so that trends can be anticipated and positively influenced. The series is sponsored by the O’Brien-Smith Leadership Program.

For more information about the speakers, visit the Ten Years Hence Web site at www.nd.edu/~cba/tenyearshence .

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