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About the Summit

In the crossroads of the United States we face economic and environmental struggles that are reflections of national and global problems, but nevertheless unique to our region.  We believe developing a strategy to confront these challenges at the regional level is key to securing a prosperous future. The strategy must be bold enough to do our part in solving national problems, yet grounded enough to preserve the resources and values of our region. Capturing Resilience is a summit to bring together leaders from government, industry, agriculture, and academia to begin the regional conversation to draft and implement this strategy.

Focus Areas:

  • Smart Growth We have been gifted with historic and picturesque small towns, although it seems that many of these cities have lost their pulse. Smart Growth is a topic that will address moving forward in community development to revitalize urban cores and create walkable downtowns.
  • Regenerative Agriculture is a topic that is core to the economic and social fabric of Mid-America. We must begin to revitalize degraded lands if we are going to maintain our productivity. Further, we must make difficult decisions in balancing the affordability of our food and the availability of arable land and clean water for future generations. 
  • Resource Productivity Mid-America is known for robust manufacturing initiatives and numerous international companies call our region home. As such, we are privileged with industry models and innovators to lead us in discussion on how to move forward in mapping how our products are made with their whole life cycle in mind.

This event is FREE and OPEN to the public thanks to our sponsors. Registration is required. This event is organized by the Office of Sustainability at Purdue and the Ecological Sciences and Engineering Graduate Program in cooperation with the Smart Strategy Initiative of the New America Foundation. To get involved in organizing, please contact ese@purdue.edu

Keynote Speaker

Bob Berkebile


Bob Berkebile, founder of Kansas City, MO, architecture firm BNIM is undisputedly one of the leading voices in sustainable design in the past few decades.  He is a founding chairman of the American Institute of Architects Committee on the Environment and a board member of the U.S. Green Building Council, a role where he helped to introduce the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standard.  We look forward to welcoming Bob as our keynote speaker and a facilitator throughout the summit...more.

Workshop Leader 


Mark "Puck" Mykelby was formerly the special strategic assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He is now a senior fellow at the New America Foundation's where he is working on the national grand strategy for the 21st century—concepts he helped to develop as the coauthor of "A National Strategic Narrative". The summit will function as the first meeting of our region to plan sustainability initiatives in Indiana and Kentucky. We are excited to have Puck on board as a facilitator of these discussions..more.