Letter to the Membership

January 3rd, 2018.

Clovis CavalcantiAt this moment in which I receive from Sabine O’Hara the presidency of ISEE, I want to greet the whole membership, and to say that I hope to be a servant of the causes that inspire us. It is interesting to remark that a note was published on the 500th anniversary of the Reformation on the evening of Tuesday, 12 December, in London, and “nailed” to the doors of the London School of Economics, stating that “the nature of the economy is that it is a subset of nature, and of the societies it emerges within. It does not exist as an independent entity. Social institutions and ecological systems are therefore central, not external, to their functioning.” And it added: “economics must be grounded in the objective constraints of the ecology of the planet.” That is all we have tried to show. For me, this is the path we must take.

I thank Sabine for giving me the responsibility, which was hers, to preside over this scientific society. ISEE arrives to me in good administrative conditions, counting on the competent and dedicated work of Anne Carter, its executive secretary. I am grateful to all my predecessors at the presidency of ISEE – Bob Costanza, Dick Norgaard, John Proops, Charles Perrings, Joan Martinez Alier, Peter May, John Gowdy, Bina Agarwal, Marina Fischer-Kowalski and Sabine O’Hara – for their work. With all of them I have had fruitful professional, and good personal relations. I participated with Bob, Dick, Proops, Perrings and Joan at the May 1990 workshop in Wye Island, where Herman Daly, Kenneth Boulding, Garrett Hardin, Silvio Funtowicz, Enzo Tiezzi and several other distinguished colleagues were also present, dreaming of an ecological economics at the service of human happiness, with the prudent use of nature.

Clóvis Cavalcanti & Pope Francis

That is the way for me. And that is why I consider relevant the effort that has been made through the campaign launched by Stuart Scott, a member of ISEE, so that the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded to the defense of sustainable development (and the ideas of ecological economics), in the figures of the Club of Rome, Herman Daly and Pope Francis – the latter only for his encyclical Laudato Si’, with no religious connotations. Because of that, I would like to make an exhortation for you ISEE people, please, to read and endorse our Nobel Peace Prize themed for Sustainable Development at NP4SD.org It’s quick and easy, and a great way to resolve to change the current paradigm for the better.

Here’s a brief, 4-minute video explanation of the initiative:

I hope to see you all in Puebla, Mexico, for ISEE 2018. This will certainly be an extraordinary event, thanks to the efforts of our dear Mexican colleagues.

Happy New Year!
Clóvis Cavalcanti
Olinda, PE – Brazil