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TEDxMonterey returned to the Monterey Institute of International Studies on Friday, April 13 as an exceptional lineup of 22 presenters addressed the theme of “Sea Change.” Before a sold-out crowd of more than 260 people, presenters including artists, entrepreneurs, research scientists, athletes, teachers, technology experts and conservationists explored our diverse human connections to the ocean and its resources.

Speakers at the conference—which was live-streamed to a global audience, with interpretation offered in seven languages—included:

  • Whitney Anderson, International Environmental Policy student at MIIS, dive master, and winner of the TEDx student speaker contest
  • John Bates, interactive media pioneer and collaborator on an art and entertainment project inspired by the ocean, theblu.com
  • Tim Bentley & Eric Woolery-Grimm, alternative energy entrepreneurs
  • Dan Brayton, professor of literature and environmental studies at Middlebury College and author of "Shakespeare’s Ocean: An Ecocritical Exploration"
  • Gary Cline, fisherman, subsistence harvester and advocate for sustainable development
  • Lynne Cox, extreme open water swimmer and New York Times bestselling author
  • Larry Crowder, science director at the Center for Ocean Solutions (COS) and professor of biology at Stanford’s Hopkins Marine Station
  • Colleen Flanigan, “living sea sculptor,” visual/performing/environmental artist, and senior TEDFellow
  • Melissa Garren, ocean scientist and Massachusetts Institute of Technology postdoctoral fellow focused on the effects of coastal pollution on marine life
  • Selin Jessa, high school student from British Colombia, organizer of TEDxYouth Antartica
  • Elin Kelsey, writer/consultant specializing in communicating science to the public and spokesperson for hope, resilience and the environment
  • Alan Lovewell (MAIEP ’10), MIIS alumnus and co-founder of Local Catch Monterey Bay, a community-supported fishery delivering sustainable seafood to local consumers
  • Max Marty, seasteading startup entrepreneur
  • Wallace J. Nichols, marine biologist, California Academy of Sciences research associate, founder/co-director of OceanRevolution.org, and founder of LiVEBLUE
  • Kyra Schlining, deep-sea biologist with the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
  • SpectorDance, a dance company specializing in works that celebrate the Monterey region’s natural environment and character
  • Jason Scorse, director of the Center for the Blue Economy and chair of the International Environmental Policy program at MIIS, and author of "What Environmentalists Need to Know About Economics"
  • Mike Sutton, California Fish and Game Commission and Vice President and Founding Director, Center for the Future of the Oceans at Monterey Bay Aquarium
  • Ann Wasser, ecologist and educator at the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History, advocate for citizen science

The packed conference was treated to a day full of innovative ideas and provocative discussions about the wise management of marine resources. In addition to the 260 in-person participants, hundreds more participated in viewing parties or individually followed the live-streamed proceedings at their computers.

Independently organized TEDx events, licensed by TED, take their format—which features notable speakers spotlighting “ideas worth spreading” in 10-to-18-minute segments—from the internationally renowned TED conference (Technology Entertainment Design). This is the third year in a row that the Monterey Institute has hosted TEDxMonterey.

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Jason Warburg

Eva Gudbergsdottir