It takes transformational leadership to inspire individuals to sacrifice the comforts of the here and now for the benefits of the there and then. That was the central message of the Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative’s (ALI) 2019 Climate Change Deep Dive.
The event provided ALI Fellows an in-depth view of the complexities and opportunities surrounding global climate issues. Harvard Business School (HBS) Professor and ALI Executive Committee Member Forest Reinhardt chaired the two-day event and convened experts from across Harvard University to share their knowledge on the topic.
ALI’s Deep Dive sessions highlight one major global or community challenge where ALI Fellows might fill a gap. Deep Dives include readings, outside experts, often faculty from relevant Harvard programs, and a focus on problem solving and practical applications of knowledge.
During the event, fellows learned from scholars in the natural sciences, the social sciences, the humanities, and the law. They also analyzed case studies of particular organizations whose strategies are affected by climate change and whose behaviors can affect the climate.
Presenters included Professors Peter Huybers of Harvard’s John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Richard Lazarus of Harvard Law School, Robert N. Stavins of Harvard Kennedy School, Forest Reinhardt, John Macomber, and Amy Edmondson of HBS, James Engell of the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences, former Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, and artist Zaria Forman.
At the close of the event, Reinhardt led fellows through a discussion of the roles of government, firms, and other actors in addressing climate change. He also encouraged fellows to think of ways they might personally take action on the issue. Ultimately, the group concluded that countries must decarbonize their energy systems, increase the efficiency of energy use, or both to meaningfully reduce global carbon emissions.
Read the full 2019 Climate Change Deep Dive Report to learn more.