panel discussion: biodiversity in the anthropocene


Panel Discussion: Biodiversity in the Anthropocene

Join the UCLA Botanical Garden for an expert discussion about species that are flourishing in a rapidly changing world

Biodiversity is undergoing tremendous change at the hands of humanity. As some habitats disappear and many wild organisms face extinction, other species flourish in novel ecosystems. Join us for an expert panel discussion which will examine the current state of biodiversity and the narratives which shape related public opinion and policy as we ask the question: how can we successfully coexist with nature on an increasingly technological planet?

Meet at 4PM at the Nest

Light reception to follow the discussion.

Directions and parking instructions.


John Clark serves a dual role as President and Executive Director of the Center for Plant Conservation (CPC) and as director of Plant Conservation at San Diego Zoo Global. John and CPC Chairman of the Board Dr. Peter Raven successfully led an initiative to relocate the CPC’s National Headquarters from St. Louis to the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research. Here, John continues to lead the CPC’s national efforts to save endangered plants through scientific research, applied conservation, and technology innovation. While John’s training and background is in basic research, his particular passion is for developing strong collaborations – bringing together world experts in a variety of disciplines – to achieve measurable conservation outcomes.

Dan Gluesenkamp is Executive Director of the California Native Plant Society where he works to celebrate and save California’s native plants and places. Dan earned his Ph.D. at UC Berkeley and worked as Executive Director of Calflora, and as Director of Habitat Protection and Restoration for Audubon Canyon Ranch’s thirty preserves. He is a co-founder of Cal-IPC and of the Bay Area Early Detection Network (BAEDN), and in 2009 discovered a presumed-extinct manzanita growing near the Golden Gate Bridge.

Ursula K. Heise is the Marcia H. Howard Chair in Literary Studies at the Department of English and the Institute of the Environment and Sustainability at UCLA. She is a 2011 Guggenheim Fellow and former President of ASLE (Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment). Her research and teaching focus on environmental narrative and culture in the Americas, Western Europe and Japan; literature and science; science fiction; and narrative theory. She is editor of the series Natures, Cultures, and the Environment with Palgrave, co-editor of the Routledge Companion to the Environmental Humanities, and Managing Editor of Futures of Comparative Literature. Her books include Sense of Place and Sense of Planet: The Environmental Imagination of the Global (Oxford University Press, 2008), Nach der Natur: Das Artensterben und die moderne Kultur (Suhrkamp, 2010) and Imagining Extinction: The Cultural Meanings of Endangered Species (University of Chicago Press, 2016). She is also a co-founder of UCLA’s Lab for Environmental Narrative Strategies (LENS).

Phil Rundel is Distinguished Professor of Biology in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UCLA, and Director of the Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden. He received his undergraduate degree at Pomona College in Claremont, followed by Master’s and Ph.D. degrees at Duke University. He joined UCLA in 1983 after serving as Professor of Biology at UC Irvine. His research has centered on the ecology, biodiversity, and conservation of plants and plant communities in the five mediterranean-climate regions of the world. This focus has led to an increasing involvement in collaborative work with government agencies and non-government organizations (NGOs) to promote public awareness of the biodiversity significance and conservation of these regions. He has also been involved with ecological research and conservation biology in tropical forest areas, with a special emphasis on research in Costa Rica, Hawai’i, Thailand, and Cambodia. He has served as a consultant to WWF on conservation