Skip to main content

Bioneers Movement Coming to Chicago in November: Vandana Shiva and John Edel to Keynote

May 25, 2012 08:50AM ● By Stephanie Leite

The human pulse is a common diagnostic tool across medical traditions. From Traditional Chinese Medicine to Ayurveda, practitioners use the rhythmic patterns to draw conclusions about a patient’s overall health and assist in determining a course of action to restore balance and harmony. If we could take Chicagoland’s pulse, what would we find? What would we learn about its current state of health, and how would we prescribe a treatment plan to ensure a long, healthy life ahead?

Great Lakes Bioneers Chicago (GLBC) is a self-organized partner of the national nonprofit Bioneers movement, which co-founder and author Kenny Ausubel describes as “an emerging culture of individuals that have peered into the heart of living systems to understand how nature operates and strive to model human systems on nature’s principles. Bioneers are social

Vandana Shiva
Vandana Shiva
and scientific innovators from all walks of life and disciplines.”

Since 2002, Beaming Bioneers (satellite conference) sites have sprung up across the country, and November 2 to 4 will showcase the latest edition to a Midwest regional movement at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

The GLBC inaugural theme is The Living City. As the largest city to ever host a Bioneers event, organizers feel it is essential to begin thinking of Chicago as a living organism, with interconnected systems that influence each other and require preventive healthcare and healing to ensure resilience and longevity. The Living City will include a unique combination of interactive workshops, interdisciplinary panels and tours of some of Chicago’s most forward-thinking projects of Chicago Bioneersenvironmental sustainability and eco-justice.

Internationally renowned scientist and activist Vandana Shiva and local Bioneer John Edel, of The Plant, will give keynote addresses. The event also will include an arts program and a youth program that allow current and upcoming leaders to learn from each other and share their visions for an urban environment inspired by nature.

John Edel
John Edel

GLBC is creating the local Bioneers movement from the ground up, and hopefully the November gathering will give birth to an ongoing, sustained movement of Biological Pioneers that are re-imagining and rebuilding the city. GLBC is looking for new members and volunteers interested in getting involved at any level, from programming and fundraising to outreach and logistics.

Potential Bioneers should contact [email protected] or visit More information about the national Bioneers movement is at

Stephanie Leite is a member of the board of directors of Chicago Bioneers.