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Virginia Tech has selected Ecological Intelligence for its 2009-2010 Common Book Project.
“The theme of ecological awareness and environmental sustainability emerged as we considered a variety of books. The selection committee felt that such a theme would offer many options for engagement and use of the book across all colleges and disciplines. It could connect with new university efforts in the area of heightened environmental awareness and action and provide opportunities to facilitate community service options for students and faculty.”
—Ron Daniel, associate provost for undergraduate education, Virginia Tech
The bestselling author of Emotional Intelligence and Primal Leadership now brings us Ecological Intelligence—revealing the hidden environmental consequences of what we make and buy, and how with that knowledge we can drive the essential changes we all must make to save our planet and ourselves.
We buy “herbal” shampoos that contain industrial chemicals that can threaten our health or contaminate the environment. We dive down to see coral reefs, not realizing that an ingredient in our sunscreen feeds a virus that kills the reef. We wear organic cotton t-shirts, but don’t know that its dyes may put factory workers at risk for leukemia. In Ecological Intelligence, Daniel Goleman reveals why so many of the products that are labeled green are a “mirage,” and illuminates our wild inconsistencies in response to the ecological crisis.
Drawing on cutting-edge research, Goleman explains why we as shoppers are in the dark over the hidden impacts of the goods and services we make and consume, victims of a blackout of information about the detrimental effects of producing, shipping, packaging, distributing, and discarding the goods we buy.
But the balance of power is about to shift from seller to buyer, as a new generation of technologies informs us of the ecological facts about products at the point of purchase. This “radical transparency” will enable consumers to make smarter purchasing decisions, and will drive companies to rethink and reform their businesses, ushering in, Goleman claims, a new age of competitive advantage.
Praise for Daniel Goleman
"Students, faculty, and staff at MIT found Daniel Goleman's lecture highly thought-provoking and stimulating. His message was simultaneously vexing and daunting as well as hopeful and optimistic. Goleman started the lecture by highlighting the fact that while questions over what is and isn't green becomes all-important, most of us become less and less equipped to answer. He contends that as the global economy has grown, our ability to make complex products with complex supply chains has outpaced our ability to comprehend the consequences - for ourselves and the planet. He showed how a simple question like "paper or plastic?" can lead to a complicated analysis of deforestation and water use versus persistent pollution.
Here's the hopeful part; Goleman then proceeded to argue that new information technologies will create "radical transparency," allowing us as consumers to know the environmental, health, and social consequences of what we buy. He believes that as shoppers use point-of-purchase ecological comparisons to guide their purchases, market share will shift to support steady, incremental upgrades in how products are made - changing everything for the better. It was a fascinating and illuminating talk which has lead to ongoing conversation and discussion here at MIT."--Tracy Purinton, Associate Director, MIT Leadership Center