The Natural Capital Initiative proudly hosted our second ‘Valuing our Life Support Systems’ natural capital summit on 6th & 7th November 2014, held at the British Library. Since our launch summit in 2009, a growing number of influential activities have emerged across all sectors within the natural capital space – from networks to research programmes, committees to coalitions. This emerging hive of activity is testament to the traction the natural capital concept has gained with a variety of audiences.
Five years on, the summit brought together some 250 influencers from across academia, policy, business, and civil society.
- Derive a common understanding of what natural capital really means
- Understand in plain language the natural and social science behind it
- Find and demonstrate ways in which sectors and initiatives can work, and are working, together to apply it
- Identify ways of ensuring that practical responses have scientific rigour
- Communicate recommendations for ways forward across the sectors.
By facilitating cross-disciplinary dialogue, the summit assessed gains made and further enabled the valuing of natural capital in planning and decision-making based on sound science. There were discussions on a range of topics, from ecosystem services and health and cultural services to economic and ecological principles of natural capital.
For a recap of the discussions, check out the storify timeline of the summit. Presentations will soon be available to view on the NCI website.
Day One: 6th November
09:00 Arrival and Registration
09:30 Welcome – Roly Keating (British Library)
09:40 Opening remarks – Rosie Hails (Natural Capital Initiative)
10:00 Professor Giles Atkinson (LSE): What is natural capital?
10:20 Dr Simon Kerley (NERC): Natural capital and knowledge
10:40 Peter Young (Aldersgate Group): Business perspectives on natural capital
11:00 Richard Spencer (ICAEW): Natural Capital debates and queries
11:30 Panel Discussion
13:00 Parallel Sessions 1
Economic and ecological principles - An interdisciplinary panel session to reflect on at the underlying principles of natural capital.
Drew Purves (Microsoft Research), Matthew Agarwala (UEA), Ian Dickie (eftec), Chair: Ece Ozdemiroglu (eftec).
Linking natural capital and other capital - An investigation into how natural capital relates to other forms of capital, such as social, economic and human capital.
Tim O’Riordan (UEA), Dorothy Maxwell (Global View Sustainability Services), Carlota Garcia-Manas (EIRIS) Chair: Jawed Khan (ONS).
How good is our knowledge? – Examination of existing databases, models and knowledge, and how well they support natural capital concepts and practical implementation.
Tom Oliver (CEH), Felix Eigenbrod (University of Southampton), Chair: Bill Sutherland (University of Cambridge).
Natural capital and sustainable growth
Mike Sewell (Kier), Stephanie Hime (KPMG), Rowland Hill (M&S), Karen Ellis (WWF-UK), Chair: Peter Young (Aldersgate Group)
Host: Aldersgate Group
14:00 Parallel Sessions 2
Victor Anderson (Global Sustainability Institute), Camilla Toulmin (IIED), Nick Dearden (World Development Movement), Chair: Richard Spencer (ICAEW).
Natural capital and health - Examining the evidence for how natural capital can deliver human health benefits.
Mat White (European Centre for Environment and Human Heath), Sari Kovats (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine), Hilary Graham (University of York), Chair: David Penchon (NHS).
Andrew Church (University of Brighton), Rob Fish (University of Exeter), Chair: Steve Albon (James Hutton Institute).
Jonathan Winn (Durham Wildlife Trust), John Watkins (CEH), Chair: Nick Dales (Natural England).
15:00 Ulrike Hotopp (Defra): UK government perspective on natural capital
15:50 Jo Pike (World Forum on Natural Capital): Natural capital: where are we now?
16:10 Pieter van der Gaag (Natural Capital Coalition): Natural Capital Coalition for Business
16:30 Panel Discussion
17:30 Drinks Reception
Royal College of GPs, 30 Euston Square.
19:00 Summit Dinner (additional cost)
After dinner address: Steve Ormerod (Professor of Ecology, Cardiff University & Chair, RSPB Council)
Day Two: 7th November
08:15 Arrival and Registration
08:45 Welcome and opening remarks - Professor Alison Hester (James Hutton Institute)
09:00 Glyn Davies (WWF): Future directions: conservation
09:15 Professor Anthony Kessel (Public Health England): Future directions: public health
09:30 Will Evison (PwC): Future directions: business and accounting
09:45 Inder Poonaji (Nestle S.A.): Future directions: business and sustainability
10:00 Panel discussion
10:30 Tea and coffee
11:00 Parallel Sessions 3
Natural capital and storytelling - This session will investigate innovative ways to communicate the concept of natural capital by engaging decision makers from a wide range of sectors with a particular focus on our experience with business, linking with Smart Economic Growth.
Host: Surrey Nature Partnership and Mark Pearson (Surrey Connects)
Host: Natural Capital Committee.
13:00 Parallel Sessions 4
Dr Tom Nisbet (Forest Research), Professor Richard Brazier (University of Exeter), Lewis Jones (South West Water), Chair: Ruth Waters (Natural England).
Host: WWF-UK; David Norman (SABMiller), Gemma Cranston (Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), Chair: Stuart Poore (WWF-UK)
Dr Tara Garnett (Environmental Change Institute), Professor Allan Buckwell (IEEP), Dr Andrew Clark (NFU), Chair: Dr Peter Costigan.
14:00 Parallel Sessions 5
This session will investigate how the notion of natural capital can be incorporated into the strategic planning of UK cities. The work of Birmingham City Council will be presented, along with an introduction to an ongoing study of biodiversity and ecosystem services in Bedford, Milton Keynes and Luton.
Nick Grayson (Birmingham City Council), Professor Jim Harris (Cranfield University), Chair: Martin Ballard (Willmott Dixon Group).
Session host: Scottish Forum on Natural Capital
Stephanie Maier (Aviva Investors), Jamie Butterworth (Ellen Mac Arthur Foundation), Justin Atkinson (Alliance Trust), Anders Nordheim (UNEP Financing Initiative), Chair: Dr Sarah Kemmitt.
15:00 Professor Mike Acreman: Summary of findings
15:15 Professor Georgina Mace (UCL): The future of natural capital
15:30 Closing remarks – Professor Alison Hester (James Hutton Institute)
15:40 Tea and coffee
We were delighted to welcome the following speakers at our event.
Watch this space – over the next few weeks we shall be loading videos and reports from the conference.