The Second Annual Conference on Gross National Happiness The Second International Conference on Gross National Happiness
Local Pathways to Global Wellbeing
St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada
June 20 to June 24, 2005
  Media Release
For Immediate Release May 18, 2005

Leading global experts come to Nova Scotia to create a better world.

Rethinking Development: Local Pathways to Global Wellbeing will be a remarkable four-day gathering that will bring together more than 400 economists, environmentalists, educators, philosophers, farmers, religious and social leaders, government officials, community activists and musicians from six continents and more than 30 countries including Bhutan, New Zealand, Ethiopia, and Brazil to share experiences and models that can lead to healthier, happier, economically and environmentally sound communities.

"There's no reason this region can't become a leading world model and an example of good development practices" said Ronald Colman, Executive Director of GPI Atlantic. "This Conference can show Nova Scotians and Atlantic Canadians how to integrate sustainable and equitable economic development with environmental and cultural preservation and good governance".

Conference organizers are excited that His Excellency John Ralston Saul, renowned philosopher and author, will address delegates; Ray Anderson, founder and CEO of Interface Inc, ranked as one of the top three companies in the world for commitment to sustainability, will explain how business can eliminate waste and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. They will be joined by: Marilyn Waring, pioneering economist, author, and former member of the New Zealand Parliament; Bunker Roy, founder of India's Barefoot College, created by and for poor villagers to build sustainable rural livelihoods; Jigmi Thinley, Home Minister and former Prime Minister of Bhutan, a small Himalayan kingdom, which believes that "Gross National Happiness is more important than Gross National Product" and which last month received the UN Champion of the Earth award; Father Francisco VanderHoff Boersma from Mexico, who founded the fair trade movement; Mathis Wackernagel, co-developer of the "ecological footprint" — one of the most widely used measures of sustainability and, a host of other leading world experts.

Rethinking Development: Local Pathways to Global Wellbeing is co-hosted by GPI Atlantic, a Nova Scotia-based non-profit research group, the Coady International Institute at St. Francis Xavier University, the Province of Nova Scotia, Shambhala International, the Gorsebrook Institute at Saint Mary's University, and other partners, and has funding from the International Development Research Centre, ACOA, CIDA, the United Nations Development Program, the Province of Nova Scotia, and other agencies.

This exciting opportunity is open to anyone who wishes to participate, but space is limited and registrations are being accepted on a first-come first-served basis.

For more information contact:

Dr. Ronald Colman, Executive Director
GPI Atlantic
902-420-5676; 902-496-8728

Dr. Andrew Harvey, Chair, Board of Directors GPI Atlantic & Conference Director
902-823-1944; 902-489-7007

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