A New Planetary Diplomacy

In 2000, Swissnex was launched with a groundbreaking vision: to invent a new science diplomacy for the coming era. It was the turn of the millennium, a period marked by rapid globalization, the explosion of digital communications, and a widespread belief in the power of science and technology to foster democracy and shared prosperity. Nearly 25 years later, Swissnex is evolving in a new international context that faces challenges of planetary scope and scale. Science has revealed the extent to which human activities have interfered with the Earth system, as evidenced by problems such as rapid climate change, extreme weather events, collapsing biodiversity, microplastic pollution, ocean acidification, multispecies pandemics, freshwater depletion, and space debris.

 

Our response to this new age is Swissnex for the Planet, an initiative to explore what we call “planetary diplomacy” across the global Swissnex network. The objective is to pioneer a novel form of science-based diplomacy aimed at recalibrating the relationship between humans and the Earth. The idea is inspired by a growing intellectual movement questioning the way our most influential traditions of thought regard humans as largely detached from nature. Instead of such human-centric worldview, it emphasizes our profound embeddedness in the biogeochemical system that supports all interdependent forms of life on this planet, including ours. Leveraging science and technology, planetary diplomacy would focus on balancing human and nonhuman interests, searching for an equilibrium in the relations between our species and the other living and nonliving entities and processes that make up the Earth system.

 

Swissnex for the Planet works as a laboratory for planetary diplomacy with the aim of developing, prototyping, and assessing the viability of the concept on a planetary scale. Based on Swissnex’s entrepreneurial, creative, and decentralized nature, the initiative features three main pillars:

  1. 0 1

    Working Group on Planetary Diplomacy

  2. 0 2

    Planetary Embassies

  3. 0 3

    Planetary Fellows at Swissnex

To learn more, contact us

Launch at Swissnex Day 2024

Swissnex for the Planet was introduced as part of Swissnex Day 2024 at the Gurten Pavilion in Bern, Switzerland, on April 24. This year, Swissnex’s annual meeting put the spotlight on planetary thinking, featuring researchers, innovators, and artists who are unveiling new ways of looking at the relationship between humans and the nonhuman world on the planet.

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