Russian Hill Walking TourDate: Thu, March 27, 2014
Time: 1:45 PM
Join a more active Commonwealth Club Neighborhood Adventure! Russian Hill is a magical area with secret gardens and amazing views. Join Rick Evans for a two-hour hike up hills and staircases and learn about the history of this neighborhood. See where great artists and architects lived and worked, and walk down residential streets where some of the most historically significant houses in the Bay Area are located.
Unintended Consequences: Is Too Much Information, Too Fast, Too Much of a Good Thing?Date: Thu, March 27, 2014
Time: 6:30 PM
Nicholas Carr, Author, The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains
Zack Lynch, Founder and Executive Director, Neurotechnology Industry Organization; Author, The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science is Changing Our World
Marilyn Walker, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, Professor of Computer Studies and Head of the Natural Language and Dialogue Systems Lab in the Baskin School of Engineering, UC Santa Cruz
Barbara Marshman, Editorial Page Editor, San Jose Mercury News - Moderator
What are the intellectual and cultural consequences of getting information too fast? Are we losing our capacity for concentration and reflection as we become more adept to scanning and skimming information? Panelists will address these important issues and discuss the advantages and dangers of the digital information revolution.
Arianna Huffington with Sheryl Sandberg: Redefining SuccessDate: Thu, March 27, 2014
Time: 7:00 PM
Arianna Huffington, President and Editor-in-Chief, Huffington Post Media Group; Author, Thrive
In conversation with Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer, Facebook; Author, Lean In
What if success was not defined by money and power alone? As president and editor-in-chief of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Huffington Post and one of Forbes' Most Influential Women In Media, Arianna Huffington is no stranger to success, and she now seeks to redefine it. Huffington is leading a groundbreaking movement to make success equally inclusive of personal health, well-being and giving back. Tackling what she has coined “The Third Metric,” this business tycoon reminds us all to pursue a life with purpose and meaning. In an interview conducted by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, these two powerhouses challenge us to re-envision "conquest" as we know it.
International Green Industry Hall of Fame ConferenceDate: Fri, March 28, 2014
Time: 8:00 AM
4th Annual International Green Industry Hall of Fame Conference
Help honor the pioneers, leaders and visionaries contributing to the green industry and helping to preserve our fragile exosystems for future generations.
2014 Award Nominees: Amory Lovins, Arbor Teas, BioBag, Build It Green, Donald Simon, Google, Green Team San Joaquin, Honda USA, Interface Inc., Ira Ehrenpreis, Kebony International, Marc Richmond, Mirimichi Golf Course, Moon Valley Organics, Roz Savage, San Francisco Giants Baseball Club, Seventh Generation, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, Stem Inc., Synergy International, 10,000 Villages, Terra Pass Inc., Terra Cycle Inc., and Toyota Motor Corporation
Location: San Jose State University Student Center, San Jose
Time: 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: $50 (includes breakfast and lunch), $25 student/senior
Also know: Co-sponsored by The Commonwealth Club of California's Climate One program, Mineta Transportation Institute, San Jose State University, Baker Peterson Franklin LLP, BCT Consulting, Geil Enterprises, REC Solar
CLICK HERE TO REGISTER OR CALL 559-217-5219
Shane Bauer, Sarah Shourd, and Joshua Fattal: Imprisoned in IranDate: Fri, March 28, 2014
Time: 7:00 PM
Shane Bauer, Sarah Shourd and Joshua Fattal
Co-authors, A Sliver of Light
In the summer of 2009, Bauer, Fattal and Shourd made international headlines when they were hiking and unknowingly crossed into Iran. The three Americans were captured by border patrol, accused of espionage and ultimately imprisoned for two years in Tehran’s infamous Evin Prison. Together they share their harrowing story of hope and survival.
Middle East Discussion GroupDate: Mon, March 31, 2014
Time: 5:30 PM
Make your voice heard in an enriching, provocative and fun discussion with fellow Club members as you weigh in on events shaping the face of the Middle East. Each month, the Middle East Member-Led Forum hosts an informal roundtable discussion on a topic frequently suggested by recent headlines. After a brief introduction, the floor will be open for discussion. All interested members are encouraged to attend. There will also be a brief planning session.
The Fracking BoomDate: Tue, April 01, 2014
Time: 12:00 PM
Russell Gold, Reporter, The Wall Street Journal; Author, The Boom: How Fracking Ignited the American Energy Revolution and Changed the World
Trevor Houser, Partner, Rhodium Group; Co-author, Fueling Up: The Economic Implications of America’s Oil and Gas Boom
Fracking for oil and natural gas is transforming the way the United States powers its economy. A flood of low-priced natural gas has undercut new nuclear plants and nudged utilities to pull the plug on old ones. Cheap gas has also stolen market share from coal and has also hit renewable sources of power, such as wind and solar. Now the fracking bonanza is spreading to China and beyond. With the U.S. poised to become the world’s largest petroleum producer in a few years, the world’s new energy equation could undermine OPEC and profoundly alter the geopolitical balance of power.
Russell Gold’s new book The Boom illustrates Texas oilmen and Oklahoma wildcatters who developed and perfected hydraulic fracturing technology that ushered in a new era of American industry. Trevor Houser’s new book Fueling Up examines the economics of fracking. Join us for a conversation about the most powerful force in today’s energy economy.
From Critical Mess to Critical Mass: How Can We Get There from Here?Date: Tue, April 01, 2014
Time: 6:00 PM
Bina Venkataraman, Senior Advisor on Climate Change Innovation, Executive Office of the President of the United States; Lecturer, MIT Department of Science, Technology & Society; Director of Global Policy Initiatives, Broad Institute
Richard Heinberg, Senior Fellow, Post Carbon Institute; Author, The End of Growth, The Party's Over and Snake Oil
Daniella Dimitrova Russo, Executive Director and Co-founder, Plastic Pollution Coalition For a World Free of Plastic Pollution
Beth Greer, Expert on sustainable and toxin-free living
Betsy Rosenberg, Host and Producer, "On the Green Front" Radio Show; Blogger, HuffPo Green; Climate Commentator, Fox News – Moderator
Extreme natural disasters, acidified oceans, shrinking coral reefs, unstoppable arboreal infections, a vanishing bee population – environmentalists say the writing is on the wall. Despite the warning signs, many in this country refuse to see or address the enormous environmental damages that are happening now all around us – damages that many warn will escalate unless humans change behavior. A panel of experts will share ideas on how to get the critical message to the masses in time to protect the environments in which we live and breathe.
Week to Week Political Roundtable and Member Social 4/1/14Date: Tue, April 01, 2014
Time: 6:30 PM
A must-attend political discussion.
Tammy Frisby, Research Fellow, Hoover Institution; Lecturer, Department of Political Science, Stanford University; Twitter @tmfrisby
Melissa Griffin Caen, Contributor, KPIX-TV and San Francisco Magazine; Attorney; Twitter @melgriffincaen
Josh Richman, State and National Politics Reporter, Bay Area News Group; Twitter @Josh_Richman
John Zipperer, Vice President of Media & Editorial, The Commonwealth Club — Host
California's electing new leaders this year, and issues like income inequality and affordability are dominating the headlines. Week to Week will take a look at the issues and the people in local, state and national politics. In its first two years, Week to Week has become a must-attend political discussion and social event. Join our panelists for informative and engaging commentary on political and other major news, audience discussion of the week’s events, and our news quiz!
And come early before the program to meet other smart and engaged individuals and discuss the news over snacks and wine at our member social (open to all attendees).
How Did Oracle Team USA Win The America's Cup - Twice?Date: Wed, April 02, 2014
Time: 6:00 PM
Jimmy Spithill, Oracle Team USA Skipper
Norbert Bajurin, Commodore, Golden Gate Yacht Club
Julian Guthrie, Reporter, San Francisco Chronicle; Author, The Billionaire and the Mechanic: How Larry Ellison and a Car Mechanic Teamed Up to Win Sailing's Greatest Race, The America's Cup, Twice
In last summer’s 34th America's Cup, San Francisco’s home team, Oracle USA, was down eight-to-one when it pulled off a comeback for the ages, with eight straight wins against Emirates Team New Zealand. The victorious skipper, Jimmy Spithill, was at the helm supported by his team and the unlikely partnership of Golden Gate Yacht Club’s Commodore Norbert Bajurin and Larry Ellison, co-founder and billionaire CEO of Oracle Corporation. They’ll talk about the danger and drama of sailing these ultra-fast, aerodynamically designed 72-foot catamarans. Guthrie is the author of The Billionaire and the Mechanic, which tells the incredible story of how a car mechanic and one of the world's richest men teamed up to win the world's greatest race – twice!
The Bohemians: Mark Twain and the San Francisco Writers Who Reinvented American LiteratureDate: Wed, April 02, 2014
Time: 6:00 PM
Ben Tarnoff, Author, The Bohemians
Ben Tarnoff, Author, The Bohemians: Mark Twain and the San Francisco Writers Who Reinvented American Literature
Tarnoff's latest book focuses on Mark Twain's early years as a struggling writer in Civil War-era San Francisco and on the countercultural community he discovered there. It was a haven for weirdos, gamblers, crooks and draft dodgers, but later became a literary laboratory for new kinds of writing, eventually influencing several of the directions American literature went during the decades that followed.
The Immigrant and the University - Peder Sather and Gold Rush CaliforniaDate: Thu, April 03, 2014
Time: 6:00 PM
Karin Sveen, Author,The Immigrant and the University
Norwegian poet Sveen has unveiled the story of Peder Sather — Norwegian immigrant, important financier of mid-19th century America, founder of California's greatest public university and the man who Sather Gate at UC Berkeley memorializes. The story of a poor farm boy from a remote corner of Norway, who traversed continents to make a large fortune, which he then used to bring learning to generations of average citizens, serves as a monumental tribute to everything good and great about both Norway and the United States.
Nuclear Power: Meltdown or Revival?Date: Thu, April 03, 2014
Time: 6:30 PM
The future of nuclear after Fukushima
Be in the Know: Plans for the Commonwealth Club's New Headquarters BuildingDate: Fri, April 04, 2014
Time: 12:00 PM
Key designers from Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects; Tipping Mar Structural Engineering; Arup Mechanical Engineering and Charles M. Salter Associates, Inc. Acoustics and Audio/Visual Design
Piper Kujac, Club Representative and Construction Project Manager - Moderator
Come hear a special presentation about the exciting architecture and sustainable design plans for The Commonwealth Club’s new club offices on the San Francisco Embarcadero. Learn about the visions and plans to continue the 110 years of The Commonwealth Club into the 21st century and the heritage of bringing insightful, enlightened, unique and informed dialogue to the Bay Area and beyond as we prepare to look ahead to what the next 110 years hold in store.
Money for LifeDate: Mon, April 07, 2014
Time: 5:15 PM
Steve Vernon, F.S.A., Author; President, Rest-of-Life Communications
How can retirement savings generate a reliable, lifetime income? Steve Vernon has spent his professional life tackling this very question and he has a plan. Join us in a discussion that is relevant to working people, retirees, policymakers and service providers alike.
Program Organizer: John Milford
Also know: In association with Western Pension and Benefits Council
Book Discussion: The Sound of Things Falling: A Novel, by Juan Gabriel VasquezDate: Mon, April 07, 2014
Time: 5:30 PM
The cocaine trade unravels a generation of Colombians.
Biz Stone: Confessions of a Creative MindDate: Mon, April 07, 2014
Time: 6:30 PM
Biz Stone, Co-founder, Twitter; Author, Things a Little Bird Told Me
“My first startup had failed. But my next startup was Twitter.” – Biz Stone, in a 2013 Wired article
In 2002, Isaac “Biz” Stone was in debt and attached to several struggling net projects. Today, we know him as a co-founder of Twitter, a successful blogger and author, and an all-around innovator and creative mind. What explains his huge success – his rapid rise, his stint with Google, how he so quickly became the face of Twitter? Biz’s latest book, Things a Little Bird Told Me: Confessions of the Creative Mind, promises to explore just that. It is a collection of pivotal personal stories and lessons about the infinite value of creativity and non-linear thinking. Join us for a conversation with Biz as we discuss his new book and delve into the mind of “Biz Stone, Genius.”
Nob Hill Walking TourDate: Tue, April 08, 2014
Time: 1:45 PM
Explore one of San Francisco’s 44 hills, and one of its original “Seven Hills”. Because of great views and its central position, Nob Hill became an exclusive enclave of the rich and famous on the west coast who built large mansions in the neighborhood. This included prominent tycoons such as Leland Stanford, and other members of the Big Four. Highlights include the history of four landmark hotels: The Fairmont, Mark Hopkins, Stanford Court and Huntington Hotel. Visit the city’s largest house of worship, Grace Cathedral, and discover architectural tidbits and anecdotes about the railroad barons and silver kings. A true San Francisco experience of elegance, urbanity, scandals and fabulous views.
Joe R. McBride: The History, Ecology and Future of Eucalyptus Plantations in the Bay AreaDate: Wed, April 09, 2014
Time: 12:00 PM
Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning
Joe R. McBride, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, UC Berkeley
McBride will explain the ecology of the eucalyptus forest in the Bay Area. He will discuss its structure, the variety of plants and animals that live within it, its health and the ecological functions it performs. There will be a description of the dynamics within these forest stands (such as whether they are successional or a climax-species that replace themselves over time without human input) and about their invasive potential.
This program is part of The Science of Conservation and Biodiversity in the 21st Century series. This series of lectures presents a new way of looking at public policy issues in conservation. The things we’ve assumed as facts often are not. Traditional approaches are losing ground as science illuminates new pathways for framing and achieving conservation goals.
Jeremy Rifkin: Are We Moving from a Capitalist to a Collaborative Economy?Date: Wed, April 09, 2014
Time: 6:00 PM
Jeremy Rifkin, Economist; Author
Jeremy Rifkin, Economist; Author, The Zero Marginal Cost Society
Economist and New York Times best-selling author Jeremy Rifkin will discuss his provocative new book, The Zero Marginal Cost Society, in which he argues that the coming together of the communication, energy and logistics internet into a seamless 21st century intelligent infrastructure – the Internet of Things – is boosting productivity to where the marginal cost of producing many goods and services is nearly zero, making them essentially free. He believes hundreds of millions of people are already transferring parts of their economic lives from capitalist markets to what he calls the global “Collaborative Commons.” Rifkin concludes that while capitalism will be with us, it will not be the dominant economic paradigm later in the century with a world beyond markets in an increasingly interdependent global Collaborative Commons.