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Gift Endows New Event Series on Environmental Issues

Trees in the Amphitheater

Dean James Goldgeier announced that the School of International Service (SIS) has received a gift of $100,000 to establish an annual lecture series highlighting critical environmental issues. The Nancy Weiser Ignatius Lectureship on the Environment is endowed by the Ignatius family and friends of the family. Nancy Weiser Ignatius is an SIS alumna, SIS/MA '69. The first event of the lecture series is planned for fall 2015.

"I am delighted that the School of International Service will host annually the Nancy Weiser Ignatius Lectureship on the Environment," said Dean Goldgeier. "Nancy Weiser Ignatius has been at the forefront of environmental advocacy -- I very much hope that the lectureship will honor her many efforts and uphold our collective commitment to a greener world."

The Ignatiuses have long been active in Washington, DC. Paul Robert Ignatius served as Secretary of the Navy, Assistant Secretary of Defense, and president of The Washington Post. Nancy Weiser Ignatius promoted environmental causes long before they became mainstream practices. More than four decades ago, she co-founded and headed Concern, Inc., an organization designed to equip consumers with the information they needed to make better choices for the environment. The organization encouraged manufacturers to develop products that were less harmful to the environment and created ecological shopping lists called "Eco-Tips." The widely distributed Eco-Tips and other activities of the organization were meant to "utilize the vast woman power of this country to help solve environmental problems," as Nancy Weiser Ignatius explained in 1972.

"The new lectureship affords yet another opportunity to highlight to others in Washington, DC and around the country the tremendous scholarship on the environment here at the School of International Service," noted Dean Goldgeier.

On the critical issue of climate change alone, SIS faculty members have collaborated to examine United Nations-sponsored conventions and other multilateral efforts to address climate change, including:
• Trade agreements and international laws as they relate to climate change;
• The volatility of resource provision and chronic flood vulnerability in poor urban or peri-urban areas due to climate change;
• The impact on food security due to climate change;
• The collective and individual suffering felt by regions most affected by climate change; and
• The positive and negative effects of geoengineering -- a technological innovation that aims to blunt the impact of climate change.

To learn more about the Global Environmental Politics program at SIS, visit:

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