John de Graaf: Author, Filmmaker, Speaker and Activist

The Dynamics of Inclusive Prosperity Initiative has invited John de Graaf, author, filmmaker, speaker and activist to give a lecture and show a section of one of his films on the 19th of September. The event is free of charge and open to everyone who is interested.

Our world is awash in crises—from climate change to growing inequality and social polarization.  How might a different language and focus—the beauty of our environment and thoughtful human design—help move us in a different, more tolerant and just direction?  Dostoevsky and Solzhenitsyn believed that beauty would save the world.  So did adventurer Doug Tompkins, founder of the giant Esprit clothing company.  But Yevtushenko asked, “Who will save beauty?”  John de Graaf will explore the current crises brought about by rampant consumerism and over-production and advocate for a “backpacker’s theory of life”—based on balance, moderation, social connection and the beauty of nature as a way beyond the worship of economic growth and toward an ideal of life satisfaction through sufficiency.  He will explore how shortening work hours and reducing consumerism can create happier, healthier and less-polarized societies, using examples from the United States, the Netherlands and other countries.  He will show a section of his film REDEFINING PROSPERITY, the story of how the fight to save a beautiful river brought Left and Right together in a small California town.

CV

John de Graaf is the son of a Dutch merchant marine officer who moved to the US just after World War II.  His father’s love of backpacking shaped John’s passion for quality of life.  John is the author of several books, including the international best-seller Affluenza, and the producer of more than 40 documentary films, including several in the Netherlands.  He has won more than 100 regional, national and international filmmaking awards.  He serves on the board of Earth Island Institute, an international environmental organization, is a member of the Balaton Group, led by Erasmus University professor Wim Halfkamp, and has been an advisor on happiness issues to the government of Bhutan, and the co-founder of the organizations, Take Back Your Time, the Happiness Alliance, and And Beauty for All.  He is an international public speaker and writer and lives in Seattle, Washington, USA.  

Visit his website

More information

The event will be held at T3-06 (Mandeville Building) from 17:00 to 19:00 on the 19th of September.

There is a maximum capacity of 47 people at the location.