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Sad news-- Dana Meadows

A light has gone out in the world.


>>From: "Anthony D. Cortese" <acortese@secondnature.org>
>>Dear friends and colleagues,
>>Some of you may already know this, but I wanted all of you to know that the
>>world has lost one of the true giants in the quest for a just and
>>sustainable world, Dana Meadows.
>>The thought of the world without one of the brightest, most thoughtful,
>>insightful, caring souls who truly lived the values she espoused is almost
>>unbearable.  Dana was a visionary, the first of the great systems thinkers
>>that have helped us all see the world in a holistic and interdependent way,
>>a great teacher, an outstanding mentor to thousands of people (including me)
>>and a gifted communicator.  She used all of those and many other wonderful
>>attributes to benefit all people and the rest of the natural world.  Dana
>>was always one step ahead of everyone in anticipating or seeing the next
>>challenge humans and the rest of the natural world would face and offering
>>creative strategies to deal with them.  She was the Cassandra (as Alan
>>Atkisson would say) that people believed.  She never shied away from calling
>>governments, industries, environmentalists, journalists and others to task
>>for policies, behaviors or actions that were unjust, harmful, ineffective or
>>just plain dumb.  She never let people who read her weekly column, "The
>>Global Citizen", people she interacted with in other ways or her students
>>get away with denial of things that have been wrong in the world.  And Dana
>>did it in a way that made you stop, think and be willing to look yourself in
>>the face and see the truth or to take action to right a wrong.
>>Dana was always hopeful and inspiring and a strong believer in the ability
>>of humans to change and reach a higher, more just and ethical way of being.
>>But Dana's most endearing and admirable quality was to give of herself and
>>her ideas with great humility and joy to everyone who would accept her
>>incredible gifts.  I know that these few words are inadequate to express all
>>that Dana has meant to me and to the world.  In the days ahead others who
>>are far more eloquent will be filling cyberspace and other media with the
>>tributes Dana so richly deserves.  She was too young, too vibrant and too
>>important to the world to die this young.  I am grateful for all the years
>>that she was alive, for everything that she had to and did share and that I
>>had the privilege of knowing her and learning from her.  May we always
>>remember the things she has taught us and the  example that she set for us
>>all to emulate.
>>With gratitude, deep sadness and much love,
>>p.s.  See note from Joan Davis and obituary below.
>>Anthony Cortese, Sc.D.
>>Second Nature, Inc.
>>99 Chauncy Street, Sixth Floor
>>Boston, MA 02111 USA
>>Tel: 617-292-7771 ext. 120
>>Fax: 617-292-0150
>>Email: acortese@secondnature.org
>>From: Joan Davis <davis@EAWAG.CH>
>>Reply-To: Joan Davis <davis@EAWAG.CH>
>>Date: Wed, 21 Feb 2001 04:21:08 +0100
>>Subject: Re: Dana's obituary for international newspapers
>>Dear Friends,
>>Please find attached (in rtf) the obituary, which Alan Atkisson has written
>>for international circulation.
>>Would you kindly forward this to local/national/international newspapers,
>>news services and other media.
>>In some cases it may need to be translated before forwarding.
>>Thank you for helping to pass on the sad news of Dana's death to the many
>>around the world who have known her... or at least of her.
>>In appreciation,
>>Joan and Aro (and Alan)
>>P.S. It would be very much appreciated, if you would forward a copy of the
>>text as used - either via email (davis@eawag.ch), fax (+41/1/8305735) or
>>normal mail (Bergliweg 12 / 8304 Wallisellen / Switzerland).
>>Donella Meadows, Lead Author of The Limits to Growth, Has Died
>>Donella H. Meadows, 59, a pioneering environmental scientist and writer,
>>died Tuesday in New Hampshire after a brief illness.  She was best known to
>>the world as the lead author of the international bestselling book The
>>Limits to Growth, published in 1972.  The book, which reported on a study of
>>long-term global trends in population, economics, and the environment, sold
>>millions of copies and was translated into 28 languages.  She was also the
>>lead author of the twenty-year follow-up study, Beyond the Limits (1992),
>>with original co-authors Dennis Meadows and Jřrgen Randers.
>>Professor Meadows, known as "Dana" to friends and colleagues, was a leading
>>voice in what has become known as the "sustainability movement," an
>>international effort to reverse damaging trends in the environment, economy,
>>and social systems.  Her work is widely recognized as a formative influence
>>on hundreds of other academic studies, government policy initiatives, and
>>international agreements.
>>Dana Meadows was also a devoted teacher of environmental systems, ethics,
>>and journalism to her students at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New
>>Hampshire, where she taught for 29 years.  In addition to her many original
>>contributions to systems theory and global trend analysis, she managed a
>>small farm and was a vibrant member of her local community.  Genuinely
>>unconcerned with her international fame, she often referred to herself
>>simply as "a farmer and a writer."
>>Donella Meadows was born March 13, 1941 in Elgin, Illinois, and educated in
>>science, earning a B.A. in chemistry from Carleton College in 1963 and a
>>Ph.D. in biophysics from Harvard University in 1968.  As a research fellow
>>at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, she was a protégé of Jay
>>Forrester, the inventor of system dynamics as well as the principle of
>>magnetic data storage for computers.
>>In 1972 she was on the MIT team that produced the global computer model
>>"World3" for the Club of Rome and provided the basis for The Limits to
>>Growth.  The book made headlines around the world, and began a debate about
>>the limits of the Earth's capacity to support human economic expansion, a
>>debate that continues to this day.  Her writing - appearing most often in
>>the form of a weekly column called "The Global Citizen," nominated for the
>>Pulitzer Prize in 1991 -- has been published regularly in the international
>>press since that time.
>>In 1981, together with her former husband Dennis Meadows, Donella Meadows
>>founded the International Network of Resource Information Centers (INRIC),
>>also called the Balaton Group (after the lake in Hungary where the group
>>meets annually).  The group built early and critical avenues of exchange
>>between scientists on both sides of the Iron Curtain at the height of the
>>Cold War.
>>As the Balaton Group's coordinator for eighteen years, she facilitated what
>>grew to become an unusually effective global process of information sharing
>>and collaboration among hundreds of leading academics, researchers, and
>>activists in the broader sustainability movement. Professor Meadows also
>>served on many national and international boards and scientific committees,
>>and taught and lectured all over the world.  She was recognized as a 1991
>>Pew Scholar and as a 1994 MacArthur Fellow for her work. In 1992 the Swiss
>>Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) presented her with an honorary
>>In 1997, Professor Meadows founded the Sustainability Institute, which she
>>described as a "think-do-tank." The Institute combines cutting edge research
>>in global systems with practical demonstrations of sustainable living,
>>including the development of an ecological village and organic farm in
>>Hartland Four Corners, Vermont.
>>Donella Meadows is survived by her mother, Phoebe Quist of Tahlequah
>>Oklahoma; her father, Don Hager of the Chicago area; a brother, Jason Hager,
>>of Wisconsin; cousins and nephews; and a large community of colleagues and
>>friends, both international and local, in the organizations that she founded
>>and assisted.
>>Obituary prepared by members of the Balaton Group (INRIC)
>>For further information contact:
>>In USA: alan@atkisson.com
>>(In New England: bmiller@vermontel.net)
>>In Europe: davis@eawag.ch
>>In Asia:arevi@taru.org

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