Thinking global, living local: Voices in a globalized world

Author Archive

Seth Baum Twitter: sethbaumSeth

Executive Director of the Global Catastrophic Risk Institute ( Based in New York City. Recently finished PhD from Penn State Geography & post-doc at Columbia University Center for Research on Environmental Decisions. Active with the Society for Risk Analysis on global catastrophic risks, which are risks of events that could significantly harm or even destroy civilization at the global scale.
  • Global Disaster Recovery

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    Amid the dire tragedy of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, I was completely in awe of the world’s response. We seemed to be throwing every possible resource we could at saving lives and healing wounds. The logistics were challenging, as Haiti is an island country whose infrastructure was largely destroyed. And […]

  • When Our Technology Is Used Against Us

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    Is the world better off with cell phones? What about the Internet? These might seem like obvious questions. Sure, the rise of cell phones can be annoying when other people’s conversations disturb our peace and quiet, and the rise of the internet makes it harder for us to shelter our […]

  • ‘Friends’ of the Environment

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    Television shows like Friends and Seinfeld may have inadvertently been among the best things to have happened to the environment over the last few decades. These shows are not about environmental issues. They don’t cause people to want to be environmentalists – at least not directly. Instead, these American sitcoms, […]

  • Activist Fatigue In The United States And The Arab World

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    Are Western democracies a role model for the Arab world? That’s a big question, with several points to consider. One obstacle that must be addressed is what I’ll call activist fatigue. It’s something that has become increasingly evident in the United States over the last few years, and it could […]

  • American Democracy And Global Climate Change

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    In early 2009, there was much optimism for climate change policy in the United States and worldwide. US voters had just elected a Democratic President and large Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress. A fairly strong climate change policy, the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES), was working […]