Keynote Address Ecocity World Summit, October 8, 2019


Marilyn Hamilton PhD, Integral City Meshworks Founder


Think Global, Act Local – who in this room has heard this expression before? Most of us. Can you even remember the first time you heard this and where you were? It’s not quite a moonshot but it is fundamental to the worldview that embraces the whole earth as one ecology and care for the relationship that human actions have on the local environment.

For sure, when I first heard it, I was somewhere in the vicinity of Vancouver. And it is a pleasure to be back in Vancouver – a city that was part of my “home” region for more than 30 years. In the last 2 years I have taken a (road less travelled) back to the “home” of my ancestors. Scotland.

Scotland is a fascinating place. Land of many philosophers, pioneers and poets. Scotland has spawned many Canadian explorers and has been a founding nation of international entrepreneurs and enterprises without whom Canada would not have emerged in all its dignities and disasters.

Scotland is also the birthplace of the man who coined that phrase, Think Global, Act Local – in 1890 – Patrick Geddes, the inspirator of City Planning, Sociology, community engagement, city revitalization +++

Geddes lived in Edinburgh. I visit there often, because it is close to where I live now – the ecovillage of Findhorn.

How many of you know of Findhorn Ecovillage Scotland? How many of you have been there? How many of you have it on your bucket list??


Today I want to share some discoveries that I have taken from Findhorn’s Beehives back to Vancouver’s Human Hive to reframe and reflect on the new paradigm of the city that I have been flirting with for 2 decades. I want to talk about how the journey from Vancouver to Findhorn and back again has called on 2 major intelligences of the Human Hive – namely Evolutionary Intelligence and Ecological Intelligence – and how these are informing and reflecting my belief that cities are critical to Thinking Globally and Acting Locally – in fact I have come to believe cities have been evolved by Gaia herself as her Reflective Organs with the capacity to think and act both globally and locally.

To download and read the Full Keynote click here: Integral City Evo to Eco EWS Keynote Oct 8, 2019