'The West makes up 20% of the planet, yet we consume 80% of its resources'

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UIC Barcelona recently organised the 7th edition of the Interdisciplinary Sustainability Workshop to mark the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. This seminar served to analyse the connections between integral ecology and reduced poverty.

The seventh edition, which was inaugurated by the Rector of UIC Barcelona, Xavier Gil, featured the participation of six guest experts, about two hundred students and thirteen lecturers from our university's Architecture, Humanities, Law and Childhood Education degree programmes.

The workshop included a roundtable entitled "Globalisation and Reduced Poverty: What can we do in the face of human tragedies?". Moderated by Dr Maria Teresa Fuertes, participants included Dr Dory Merino, an expert in investigative journalism, Mercè Darnell, a volunteer at Caritas Barcelona for over twenty years, and Jaume Vives, an investigative journalist and founder of the newspaper El Prisma.

There was also opportunity for students from various degree programmes to present a total of twenty-six projects. These research projects were required to address problems associated with integral ecology and seek solutions or make suggestions for improvement from the point of view of the students' respective degree programmes.

The workshop concluded with a conference by Dr Josep M. Mallarach, "Causes of the systemic crisis and proposals for change through spiritual ecology", in which he reminded participants that, "the West makes up 20% of the planet, yet we consume 80% of its resources." He also mentioned the three key problems which preclude integral ecology: ignorance, lack of awareness and irresponsibility.

The seventh edition of the Interdisciplinary Sustainability Workshop served as an opportunity to share research and life experiences which promote reflection on how to make a positive contribution to the reduction of human misery through cooperation and more sustainable consumption.