Experts Explore Innovative Technologies for Conserving Oceans at SXSW Eco 2013

Award-winning documentary filmmaker Mark Hall joins EarthPeople, Kiss the Ocean, Mission Blue and Nested Strategies to lead discussion with international audience.

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We hope that attendees will walk away more informed about challenges in ocean conservation and be inspired to use principles of epic social innovation for their own movement or cause.

Dallas, TX (PRWEB) September 30, 2013

SXSW Eco, a conference for professionals working to solve the complex challenges facing civil society, the economy and the natural world, will be held October 7 - 9, 2013 at the Austin Convention Center.

Texas-based experts will present a panel discussion “Ocean Conservation through Social Innovation” to the international audience of thought leaders and decision makers. Speaking from their unique vantage point as social entrepreneurs, the panelists will explore opportunities to connect with and protect the ocean through media & communication, consumer choices, eco-tourism, advocacy and education.

"The ocean offers a greater biodiversity of life than anything terrestrial on earth and disrupting any part of this ecosystem can affect us in ways we don't understand,” said panel moderator Amy King of Nested Strategies. “It is vital that social entrepreneurs and other change agents take a systems-thinking approach to these challenges and opportunities. At SXSW Eco, our panelists will look at innovative practices that can leverage big change in any system for any cause."

"People should walk away with perspective on how actions outside of the ocean affect the oceanic system, what's at stake and how they can apply principles and tools of social innovation to ocean conservation, or their particular cause," added King.

The panelists share the belief that oceans - the source of 70% of the world’s oxygen and the main source of protein for 2 billion people – require immediate attention on a variety of fronts. Presently, half of fish species are imperiled by climate change, overfishing, ocean acidification and toxic pollution. Addressing human behavior and innovation in conservation, the panel will touch on key areas of interest for the third-annual event, including themes of education, technology, health, business, climate change, energy, food, water, policy and activism.

"We hope that attendees will walk away more informed about challenges in ocean conservation and be inspired to use principles of epic social innovation for their own movement or cause," says King.

Representing the diversity of practices and passion involved in ocean conservation, the panelists include:

  •     Anna Clark, author and president of EarthPeople, a specialized communications firm and independent publisher of media on culture, sustainability, and social innovation. Her clients include startups, non-profits, JCPenney, Inc. and the International Finance Corporation, a division of The World Bank. Anna is a Public Voices Fellow at The OpEd Project, a featured columnist for Greenbiz.com and a freelance journalist for Guardian Sustainable Business. She also serves as the Texas chair of Shark Stewards, a San Francisco-based non-profit dedicated to conserving our oceans through the protection of sharks.
  •     Mark S Hall, an award-winning filmmaker based in Austin. His latest feature-length documentary project “Sushi: The Global Catch” premiered in 2011 at the Seattle International Film Festival where it won a special jury prize. “Sushi” examines the traditions, global growth and potential environmental consequences of a popular cuisine in a rapidly globalizing world. The film has been screened in theaters and festivals in over 40 countries around the world.
  •     Mark McWilliams, a professional photographer, scuba Instructor and owner of Kiss the Ocean, a Dallas-based eco-tourism business specializing in travel throughout the bio-diverse corridor of Central America and Costa Rica. Since the late 90’s, Mark has had the opportunity to guide specialty groups and expedition crews that promote science and exploration, including IMAX films, Howard Hall Productions and BBC. Mark continues to promote aquatic conservation through commercial photography, dive instruction, teaching, speaking and guiding eco-tourists to Costa Rica and throughout the Central Atlantic and Pacific.
  •     Amy King leads Nested Strategies, a creative consulting firm focusing on holistic branding, communications, marketing and sustainability strategies to help organizations thrive in a complex environment. Most recently, Amy worked for U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), one of the most progressive sustainability change agents, where she launched the USGBC Leadership Institute and spearheaded the consulting support for a network of 80 USGBC non-profit affiliates. She has over 15 years of marketing, media, organizational development and sustainability experience in the private and non-profit sectors.
  •     Charlotte Vick, strategic partnership director of the Sylvia Earle Alliance/Mission Blue and curator of “Explore the Ocean” in Google Earth. As the partnership director for Mission Blue, Charlotte works with over 350 ocean partners in civil society, government, research, exploration, education and media. This collaboration with Google has produced over 3,000 stories about marine life, science and exploration, ocean and atmosphere, ecosystems, marine protected areas and human connection in Google Earth.

About SXSW Eco:

South by Southwest (SXSW) is world renowned for cutting edge cultural, music, interactive, and film conferences and festivals. For SXSW Eco, it employs this experience in creating dynamic forums for innovation and collaboration to likewise serve the sustainability community. SXSW Eco presents a diverse array of interrelated programming. With this diverse programming comes a unique set of participants with which to connect. The laid back atmosphere facilitates open discussion which has led to a number of unexpected collaborations and projects. For more information, go to http://sxsweco.com/.


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