Beginning in March of 2015, James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, will host Cultivating the Globally Sustainable Self, a series of research-to-practice summits that will address transformative teaching, training, and learning.

Why are we doing so?

Throughout history, humans always have endeavored to influence the minds and behaviors of others. We strive to do so in many ways -- through our religious and cultural systems to the development of laws; through our roles as parents or employers to formal education and training; or through advocacy movements regarding what we may value as good, right, and true.

But what compels us to seek such change in self and others? What is the thing within us that changes? Do we know when such change occurs? When individuals, groups, and societies are transformed by our efforts, do we know why? Do we know how?

To address questions such as these, leaders from a range of big picture movements -- conflict resolution, human rights, sustainability, global education, and religious and cultural understanding -- will come together in order to learn from each other's missions, methods, goals, and activities. In so doing, we will draft and pursue an agenda for a global program of research-to-practice on the basis of summit presentations and deliberations regarding theory, data, models, and methods.

By bringing together local and global researchers, educators, students, advocates, leaders, and policy makers, we seek to understand better why and how transformation occurs, for whom, and under what circumstances. Ultimately, we intend to learn how to cultivate a more globally sustainable way of living, knowing, and being, and translate our findings into practical solutions for the enhancement of teaching, training, and learning.

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