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Harmony Forum

Peace from Harmony
Yuan T. Lee. Energy, Environment and the Future of Mankind: One Community of One Harmonious Civilization

Yuan Tseh Lee, Professor

Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1986)



Academia Sinica,

President Emeritus





Yuan Tseh Lee was born o­n November 19, 1936 in Hsinchu, Taiwan. His father is an accomplished artist and his mother a school teacher.

He started his early education while Taiwan was under Japanese occupation - a result of a war between China and Japan in 1894. His elementary education was disrupted soon after it started during World War II while the city populace was relocated to the mountains to avoid the daily bombing by the Allies. It was not until after the war when Taiwan was returned to China that he was able to attend school normally as a third year student in grade school.

His elementary and secondary education in Hsinchu was rather colorful and full of fun. In elementary school, he was the second baseman o­n the school's baseball team as well as a member of the ping-pong team which won the little league championship in Taiwan. In high school he played o­n the tennis team besides playing trombone in the marching band.

Besides his interest in sports during this time, he was also an avid and serious reader of a wide variety of books covering science, literature, and social science. The biography of Madame Curie made a strong impact o­n him at a young age. It was Madame Curie's beautiful life as a wonderful human being, her dedication toward science, her selflessness, idealism that made him decide to be a scientist.

In 1955, with his excellent academic performance in high school, Lee was admitted to the National Taiwan University without having to take the entrance examination, a practice the Universities took to admit the best students. By the end of his freshman year he had decided chemistry was to be his chosen field. Although the facilities in the Taiwan University were less than ideal, the free and exciting atmosphere, the dedication of some professors, and the camaraderie among fellow students in a way made up for it. He worked under Professor Hua-sheng Cheng o­n his B.S. thesis which was o­n the separation of Sr and Ba using the paper electrophoresis method.

After graduation in 1959, he went o­n to the National Tsinghua University to do his graduate work. He received his Master's degree o­n the studies of the natural radioisotopes contained in Hukutolite, a mineral of hot spring sediment under Professor H. Hamaguchi's guidance. After receiving his M.S. he stayed o­n at Tsinghua University as a research assistant of Professor C.H. Wong and carried out the x-ray structure determination of tricyclopentadienyl samarium.

He entered the University of California at Berkeley as a graduate student in 1962. He worked under the late Professor Bruce Mahan for his thesis research o­n chemiionization processes of electronically excited alkali atoms. During his graduate student years, he developed an interest in ion-molecule reactions and the dynamics of molecular scattering, especially the crossed molecular beam studies of reaction dynamics.

Upon receiving his Ph.D. degree in 1965, he stayed o­n in Mahan's group and started to work o­n ion molecule reactive scattering experiments with Ron Gentry using ion beam techniques measuring energy and angular distributions. In a period of about a year he learned the art of designing and constructing a very powerful scattering apparatus and carried out successful experiments o­n N2+ + H2 --> N2H+ + H and obtained a complete product distribution contour map, a remarkable accomplishment at that time.

In February 1967, he joined Professor Dudley Herschbach at Harvard University as a post-doctoral fellow. He spent half his time working with Robert Gordon o­n the reactions of hydrogen atoms and diatomic alkali molecules and the other half of his time o­n the construction of a universal crossed molecular beams apparatus with Doug McDonald and Pierre LeBreton. Time was certainly ripe to move the crossed molecular beams method beyond the alkali age. With tremendous effort and valuable assistance from the machine shop foreman, George Pisiello, the machine was completed in ten months and the first successful non alkali neutral beam experiment o­n Cl + Br2 --> BrCl + Br was carried out in late 1967.

He accepted the position as an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and the James Franck Institute of the University of Chicago in October 1968. There he started an illustrious academic career. His further development as a creative scientist and his construction of a new generation state-of-the-art crossed molecular beams apparatus enabled him to carry out numerous exciting and pioneering experiments with his students. He was promoted to associate professor in October 1971 and professor in January 1973.

In 1974, he returned to Berkeley as professor of chemistry and principal investigator at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory of the University of California. He became an American citizen the same year.

In the ensuing years, his scientific efforts blossomed and the scope expanded. His world leading laboratory now contains seven very sophisticated molecular beams apparati which were specially designed to pursue problems associated with reaction dynamics, photochemical processes, and molecular spectroscopy. His laboratory has always attracted bright scientists from all over the world and they always seem to enjoy working together. He takes great pride in the fact that more than fifteen of his former associates are serving as professors in major universities, and many others are making great contributions at the national laboratories and in the private sector.

Lee and his wife, Bernice Wu, whom he first met in elementary school have two sons, Ted (born in 1963), Sidney (born in 1966) and a daughter, Charlotte (born in 1969).

Among some of the awards and recognitions he has received over the years include:

Alfred P. Sloan Fellow, 1969-1971

Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Teacher Scholar Grant, Receipient 1971-1974.

Fellow, American Academy of Arts and Science, 1975.

Fellow, American Physical Society, 1976.

John Simon Guggenheim Fellow, 1976-1977.

Member, National Academy of Sciences, 1979.

Member, Academia Sinica, Taiwan, China, 1980.

Honorary Professor, Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Science, Beijing, China, 1980.

Honorary Professor, Fudan University, Shanghai, China, 1980.

Miller Professorship, University of California, Berkeley, California, 1981-1982.

Ernest O. Lawrence Award, U.S. Department of Energy, 1981.

Sherman Fairchild Distinguished Scholar, California Institute of Technology, 1983.

Harrison Howe Award, Rochester Section, American Chemical Society, 1983.

Peter Debye Award of Physical Chemistry, American Chemical Society, 1986.

National Medal of Science, 1986.

Honorary Professor, Chinese University of Science and Technology, Hofei, Anhuei, China, 1986.

Honorary Doctor of Science Degree, University of Waterloo, 1986.

From Les Prix Nobel. The Nobel Prizes 1986, Editor Wilhelm Odelberg, [Nobel Foundation], Stockholm, 1987

This autobiography/biography was written at the time of the award and later published in the book series Les Prix Nobel/Nobel Lectures. The information is sometimes updated with an addendum submitted by the Laureate. To cite this document, always state the source as shown above.


Addendum, March 2006

After receiving the Nobel Prize in 1986, Yuan Tseh Lee continued his research in chemical dynamics. Aside from research o­n reactive scatterings, his research group has made major contributions in the elucidation of various photochemical processes as well as in the determination of the structure of various protonated molecular clusters by obtaining infrared spectra. Many new instruments were developed for these purposes. He also directed much of his attention to the advancement of international scientific developments and to the promotion of general public affairs. As a professor of chemistry at the University of California at Berkeley from 1986 to 1993, Lee o­n different occasions served as Co-Chair of the Chancellors Asian-American Affairs Committee at UC Berkeley, Member of the California Council o­n Science and Technology, and Member of the California Institute of Technology Board of Trustees. At the national level, he served o­n the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board and the Welch Foundation Science Advisory Board.

In January 1994, after 32 years of research and teaching in the U.S., he took the important step of returning to his home country, Taiwan, to serve as President of Academia Sinica. Originally founded o­n the Chinese mainland in 1928, Academia Sinica has long been the most prominent research institution in Taiwan; at present, it has over 30 research institutes, covering the humanities, social sciences as well as the physical and biological sciences. During his tenure as President of Academia Sinica, Lee has worked hard to improve the quality of research in that institution. He believes the research conducted at Academia Sinica in several fields, including his own, now rivals the best works done in other parts of the world.

Lee has also taken an active role in promoting scientific and cultural developments in Taiwan. From 1994 to 1996, he was the chair of the national committee for educational reform. From 1996 to 2000, he led a national organization for community empowerment in Taiwan. From 2000 to 2002, he chaired a nonpartisan group that gave advice o­n matters concerning cross-strait relations (i.e. relations between Taiwan and China) to President Chen Shui-bian, whose electoral victory in 2000 marked the first change in the ruling party since World War II. Since his return to Taiwan, Lee has established several new foundations and aided existing organizations that support educational and research activities. He has also traveled extensively around the world to attend scientific conferences and hold lectures.

Lee is scheduled to retire from his position as President of Academia Sinica in October 2006. Thereafter, he plans to work at the Institute of Atomic and Molecular Sciences and the Genomics Research Center, both at Academia Sinica. So far he has received 32 honorary doctoral degrees from universities around the world.


Dear Dr. Semashko:

I did not prepare a manuscript for the meeting of ISA in Gothenburg. However, I did prepare an article when I gave a lecture in Turkey last year. The content is quite similar to what I presented in Gothenburg. I hope this attached article will serve the purpose.

It was very nice to have met you in Gothenburg and also thank you for your book "Harmonious civilization".

Best wishes,

Yuan T. Lee




Energy, Environment and the Future of Mankind

(Leo Semashkos comments are marked in [])


CharlesDarwinwhowasborn 200 years ago did remind us that It is not the strongest of the species that will survive, or the most intelligent; it is the o­ne most adaptable to change. If the environment changes faster than the time required for a given species to evolve, the likely result will be extinction. With the fast changing climate and rapidly deteriorating ecosystem today, human species with a life cycle of 30 to 40 years are not likely to evolve and adapt as quickly. Unless human species manage to slow down the change of environment, the fate of extinction might be inevitable.


(1) Recent Development of Human Society o­n Earth


After the appearance of our ancestor o­n the heavily forested planet a couple of million years ago, the development of the human society as a whole, was in harmony with nature. [1] Mankind was indeed a part of nature, reliant o­n the sun for the creation of most of what was needed to survive. Since the population of mankind was small, for a long period of time their limited activities seemed to have affected neither the biosphere nor the living environment of mankind to any great extent.


However, the development of mankind took a new turn after the industrial revolution, which began about two hundred fifty years ago. As mankind learned to transform energy from o­ne form to another from chemical, thermal, electrical to mechanical and invented various machines that could perform work thousands of times more powerfully, more precisely and more reliably than could be possibly done with human and animal labor, the productivity of mankind increased immensely and an unprecedented improvement of living standards was achieved. The success of mankind o­n the surface of the earth had been quite remarkable. But, during this process, mankind became addicted to the use of a large amount of energy, and since the energy from the biomass created by sunshine no longer satisfy our need, we began to depend more and more o­n fossil fuelscoal, natural gas and petroleumwhich were buried under the ground and took millions of years to accumulate. In USA in 1850, 90% energy depended o­n wood burning, but 80 years later by 1930, 90% energy came from the combustion of fossil fuel. Fossil fuels also provided energy and feed stock needed for the production of various new materials, such as plastics, fertilizer, synthetic fibers, steel and cement, and regrettably man had drastically changed the intimate relation between man and the nature. Harmonious relation between man and the biosphere was disrupted, and the important role played by the sun in the development of mankind or the philosophical view of Confucius Man and Nature are but o­ne (天人合一), somehow seemed to have been forgotten. [2]


As we entered the 21st century, we began to realize that the current development patterns of human society are not sustainable. Problems related to population explosion, natural resource depletion and the damage done to the living environment have become quite serious. In a sense, the earth was o­nce regarded as infinite or unlimited for mankind, not o­nly because of the resources available, but also due to the ability of the earth to digest all the waste produced by mankind. However, from the point of view of the damage done to the ecosystem or the living environment, the earth as a whole should be considered limited and overdeveloped at present. For example, carbon dioxide produced by human activities is far exceeding the capacity of the earth to absorb through the growth of the forest or coral reefs and other mechanism, and the global warming trend is threatening the very existence of human being o­n earth. It is quite ironic that during the 20th century not o­nly are the developed countries overdeveloped, so-called developing countries are also overdeveloped. It is unfortunate that so-called developing countries are following in the footsteps of developed countries, and marching along the unsustainable path established by developed countries in the past when the earth was still unlimited.


It is extremely important for mankind to wake up immediately and accede to the fact that the human society as a whole is living beyond its means. We must learn to work together as a community to find new, sustainable ways to re-establish an intimate relation with biosphere, live in harmony with nature, and to return to a more direct relationship with the mighty power of the sun. [3] After all, it was the sun which brought us altogether here o­n the surface of the earth.


(2) Issues o­n Energy and Environment


One of the most urgent problems man faces today is the problem related to the relationship between energy and the environment, especially global warming trends caused by the emission of greenhouse gases, and the energy crises caused by the widening gap between the limited supply and rapidly growing demand for petroleum and other fossil fuels. The other problem, which menaces to wipe out large portions of humanity in a short time, is the spread of infectious diseases, like those caused by virus H5N1.


It is comforting to know that, at present, energy received by the surface of the earth in o­ne hour is approximately equal to the total energy consumption of the entire world in a year. In other words, the amount of energy the surface of the earth received is approximately ten thousand times the energy consumed by the human society. It means that if we were to be clever enough, we can depend entirely o­n solar energy. For example, if an inexpensive practical photovoltaic cell, which converts 10% of solar energy to electricity becomes available it will o­nly take 1% of planets land area to generate enough electric energy to satisfy the energy needs of the entire world. If the electrical energy generated by a photovoltaic cell could be effectively stored or used to electrolyze water into hydrogen and oxygenor to even more directly dissociate water by using a combination of photovoltaic cellsit is not inconceivable that countries with large land masses could become energy exporting countries, nor that hydrogen gas might then become a major energy source as we enter the age of the hydrogen economy. If we learn to develop bio fuel more efficiently or to invent efficient artificial leaf, the photosynthesis might provide enough biomass o­n earth to satisfy the need of liquid fuel and other chemical feed stocks now provided by petroleum.


To make it possible for the world to achieve sustainable development, we must do the following things to reduce our dependence o­n fossil fuel.

(A) Increase of our energy efficiency, and improve the recyclable usage of materials.

(B) Develop efficient renewable energy sources, e.g. photovoltaic cells, wind power generators, utilization of geothermal, ocean current and thermal energy conversion, and various biofuels.

(C) Develop new generation of safe nuclear reactors and appropriate waste disposal technology and fusion reactors.

(D) Examine our population policies and the way of life. We need to learn to live simpler and frugal life. [4]

(E) Protect our living environment and ecosystems and maintain biodiversity. Although our current scientific knowledge and technology enables us to get it started, there are many challenging scientific problems awaiting a solution. For example, in photosynthetic processes, most of the solar energy is stored in fiber of the plants rather than carbohydrates. Although the production of alcohol from sugar cane or corn has been effective and successful, the challenge lies in the effective production of alcohol from fiber through hydrolysis and fermentation. For harvesting energy from geothermal, ocean flow and thermal energy conversion, new engineering technologies need to be developed.


With concerted efforts, which include the development of various renewable energies, the change of the way of life and the social structure, forty to fifty years from now, we could become largely free from the use of fossil fuels. [5] We will be again like our ancestors directly reliant o­n the power of the sun; perhaps supplemented by new generation of nuclear fission reactors or micro suns, in the form of fusion reactors. But during the transition period of the next 30 years, especially before the fusion reactor becomes successful, while nuclear fission reactors still play a role, we probably will continue to depend o­n coal to a great extent, and the sequestering of CO2 will remain to be a problem in need of a solution.


In recent years, the long neglected development of vaccine for infectious disease is finally picking up some momentum with international efforts. The race lies between the perfection of H5N1 vaccine and the mutation of H5N1 virus which initiate the transmission from people to people. More research works need to be carried out in this area. However, we do have to pay attention to the fact that in the past the fund which has been spent for medical research globally has o­nly been targeted to problems related to 10% of the population. It is quite obvious that if we do not pay more attention to the deteriorating situation in developing countries, there is no way that we can combat infectious decease effectively.


(3) The St Jamess Palace Memorandum


In May of 2009, after the St Jamess Palace Symposium of Nobel Laureates in London, a memorandum was issued which calls for Action for a Low Carbon and Equitable Future with the following content.


The St Jamess Palace Memorandum calls for a global deal o­n climate change that matches the scale and urgency of the human, ecological and economic crises facing the world today. It urges governments at all levels, as well as the scientific community, to join with business and civil Society to seize hold of this historic opportunity to transform our carbon-intensive economies into sustainable and equitable systems. We must recognize the fierce urgency of now. [6]


The Fierce Urgency of Now


Climate risk avoidance, energy security, sustainable land use, population growth and equitable economic development constitute a key set of interacting challenges for humankind in the 21st century. [7] The evidence is increasingly compelling for the range and scale of climate impacts that must be avoided, such as droughts, sea level rise and flooding leading to mass migration and conflict. The robust scientific process, by which this evidence has been gathered, should be used as a clear mandate to accelerate the actions that need to be taken. Political leaders cannot possibly ask for a more robust, evidence-based call for action.


In a time of financial and economic crisis, the participants of the St Jamess Palace Symposium emphasize that without directing current economic recovery resources wisely, and embarking o­n a path towards a low carbon economy, the world will have lost the opportunity to meet the global sustainability challenge. Decarbonising our economy offers a multitude of benefits, from addressing energy security to stimulating unprecedented technological innovation. A zero carbon economy is an ultimate necessity and must be seriously explored now.


Milestones of the Great Transformation


Building o­n the Potsdam Memorandum and the recent advances in the scientific understanding of climate change, the participants of the St Jamess Symposium identified as key requirements an effective and just global agreement o­n climate change, low-carbon energy infrastructure and tropical forest protection, conservation and restoration.


1)Delivering an effective and just global agreement o­n climate change


Firm political leadership is now crucial. Leadership is primarily required from developed countries, acknowledging their historical responsibility as well as their financial and technological capacity. However, all countries will need to implement low carbon development strategies. In this spirit of trust, every country must act o­n the firm assumption that all others will also act. A long-term commitment under the United Nation Framework Convention o­n Climate Change (UNFCCC) is now urgently required. The global agreement in Copenhagen must include the following elements:


��Acknowledging the compelling evidence of science we should confine the temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius to avoid unmanageable climate risks. This can o­nly be achieved with a peak of global emissions of all greenhouse gases by 2015 and at least a 50% emission reduction by 2050 o­n a 1990 baseline. This in turn means that developed countries have to aim for a 25-40% reduction by 2020. A robust measure of assessing the necessary emission reductions is a total carbon budget, which should be accepted as the base for measuring the effectiveness of short-term (2020) and long-term (2050) targets;


��The creation of carbon prices adopted across large parts of the global economy combined with measures to lower the price of low carbon energy, especially in developing countries. Funds raised should be used to provide the necessary financial support for adaptation;


��The agreement must acknowledge the priority of developing countries to overcome poverty while ensuring sustainable development.


2) Delivering a low carbon energy infrastructure


Decarbonising our society requires an increase in energy conservation and efficiency, and a revolution in our energy infrastructure now. The required technological innovations will not be achieved without an unprecedented partnership between government and business.

Actions in the following areas are needed:


��Clear policy frameworks aimed at fostering innovation and the demonstration, scale up and roll out of low carbon technologies including globally coordinated investment frameworks, linked to economic recovery, with the emphasis o­n green growth;


��Developed countries should commit to a significant increase in investments for research, development and deployment;


��Technology sharing and financial support, through mechanisms such as globally supported feed-in-tariffs for renewable energy, are required to help developing countries leapfrog to a low carbon economy;


��The establishment of smart grids connecting renewable energy sources over large areas and implementing novel energy storage technologies.


3) Delivering tropical forest protection, conservation and restoration


Tropical forests provide the ecosystem services essential for human well-being and poverty alleviation. In addition deforestation and forest degradation are substantially contributing to climate change and global biodiversity loss at the genetic, species and landscape level. Both locally and globally, protecting boreal and tropical forest cover is an essential tool for mitigation of, and adaptation to, climate change. Without a solution to rainforest protection, there is no solution to tackling climate change.


An emergency package is needed now to provide substantial funding to tropical forest nations to help them halt deforestation and embark o­n alternative economic development paths, including:


��Accelerating a long-term UNFCCC agreement o­n halting deforestation and o­n forest restoration, including innovative financing mechanisms from public and private sources;


��Building capacity as well as mechanisms for verification and national governance structures that can support and reward the maintenance of rainforest regions. Developing countries need to take their own responsibility in tropical forest protection, conservation and restoration.


The Contribution of Science


The solutions to the extraordinary environmental, economic and human crises of this century will not be found in the political arena alone. Stimulated by the manifesto of Bertrand Russell and Albert Einstein, the first Pugwash gathering of 1957 united scientists of all political persuasions to discuss the threat posed to civilization by the advent of thermonuclear weapons. Global climate change represents a threat of similar proportions, and should be addressed in a similar manner. There should be an acceleration and integration of global sustainability studies, to encourage the active involvement of all scientists in these matters, championing the process of robust scientific study. All scientists should be urged to contribute to raising levels of public knowledge o­n these threats to civilization and engage in a massive education effort to popularize the principles in this Memorandum. [8]


We know what need to be done. We cannot wait until it is too late. We cannot wait until what we value most is lost.


What stated in this Memorandum is extremely important and worth paying great attention by all.


(4) Dilemma of living in a partially-globalized world


Although we have witnessed the process of the globalization of human society during the last few decades, the process is o­nly half complete, and because of this, we are suffering from the consequences. Owing to highly-developed transportation and communication technologies, our world is relatively shrunken than it o­nce was, and it appears that the concept of global village is slowly taking root as a number of human activities, most notably in the economic sphere, become globalized. The spread of disease around the world is another example. With thousands of airplanes daily crossing oceans and continents, loaded with people and goods, disease causing bacteria, viruses, and other microbes certainly will not be confined to specific locations. Similarly, environmental problems such as the depletion of the ozone layer by chlorofluorocarbons and global warming trends caused by greenhouse gases are problems that must be addressed o­n a global scale. o­n the other hand, in spite of the increased international collaboration in the areas of science and technology, high-tech based economic competition is still largely carried out o­n a national basis. Currently, in the partially globalized world, it is quite clear that o­nly those people who are able to stage their activities o­n a global scale are benefiting enormously. [9] For that reason it is not surprising that we will have to tackle such problems as the widening gap between the rich and poor, both among countries and people in a country, nor that threats to solve problems by military force have not disappeared. These problems might be avoided if the entire world were to become one community. [10]


We should also realize that though the globalization of the world economy is driving us toward a borderless society, it will not reduce the differences among peoples in various regions overnight. Establishment of a new, common global culture, [11] together with more effective ways of communicating among all the peoples, will certainly take time. The differences among cultural heritages, languages, and religions that make this world so rich and colorful will not, and should not, be made to disappear. As the world shrinks in relative terms, and contact between peoples becomes more frequent, whether or not the difference in civilization are likely to cause an inevitable crash (as suggested by the well-known scholar Huntington), would seem to be entirely dependent o­n how well people around the world learn to communicate and to understand, appreciate, and respect cultural heritage. To become good citizens of the global village, we need to learn quickly and also to teach our young people, to take a global view and to respect, appreciate, and understand the different cultures of different peoples. [12] In this aspect, scientists certainly can lead the way.


(5) Science and Technology in Society Forum in Kyoto


In the fall of 2004, Mr. Omi, the former Minister of Finance of Japan, organized a very important annual forum in Kyoto, with the title of Science and Technology in Society forum. More than six hundred leading scientists, business leaders and policy makers were invited every year from all over the world to discuss problems related to the subject matter of the forum. The forum aroused great enthusiasm among participants and has since become a very successful and important annual event. During the past October, in the fifth 2008 forum was held with more than 600 attendees.


Mr. Omi made two important points when he described the fundamental concept of this forum in the opening ceremony of the first forum. He mentioned positive and negative aspects of the rapid progress of science and technology, and noted that the benefits of science and technology have not yet reached everyone equally, which, as he said, is really what symbolizes the lights and shadows of science and technology. While the negative aspects must be properly controlled, the positive features of science and technology should be promoted.


Mr. Omis other important point was stated thus: Todays problems are global and can not be solved by any single country or by scientists alone. He went o­n saying that Boundaries between nations are merely lines o­n a map; nature makes no such distinctions. We should think of ourselves as members of humankind, whose very existence will be at risk if we do not live in accordance with the principles of Mother Nature. Indeed, as an astronaut observes the beautiful earth from the spacecraft, the astronaut will not find any national boundaries.


I believe most of us sitting in this room would support this idea without hesitation. However, if we do not try to answer some other questions related to the fact that the earth is limited and the world is o­nly partially globalized, our efforts to find solutions might encounter some difficulties. For example, we must also ask, How many people can the planet support if we were to extend the living standard of the people in the so called developed countries to everyone o­n earth? It is interesting to note that when India became independent, in response to the question of how the people in that country could catch up with the living standard of the people in Great Britain, Gandhi, rightfully recognized that it would take the natural resources of many Planet Earths, if the people in India were to have the British way of life. It is just impossible. [13]


If we do not fully appreciate and understand the boundary conditions of the planet of earth, the rules of the game and the consequences of competition in a globalized market-driven economy, practicing the so called good sciences for the greater good can still produce miserable losers among us when these good sciences are used mainly as a tool for global economic competition, especially when science and technology are used for the domination of some countries over others. Scientists as a whole should take full responsibility to ensure that science and technology bring benefits to everyone equally. If we are not careful, we might predict that even if science and technology were to advance in faster pace along with the excellent material comforts and improvement in healthcare, the continuing population explosion and excessive usage of natural resources might overload the planet of earth, and the sustainable development might not be possible.


(6) Concluding Remarks


Many of the problems we face today are problems that cannot be solved with current scientific knowledge and technologies they await the accumulation of new knowledge and the development of new technologies. That is why it is so important to continue our efforts for the advancement of science and technology, and for the education of a new generation of creative scientists. [14]


During the long history of mankind, our ancestors invented various technologies in order to survive better or to improve the quality of life. Their curiosity and their desire to understand the natural phenomena were the basis of the advancement of science. Until about o­ne hundred years ago, the advancement of science was driven by the available technology; o­nly during the last century have technological advances been led by the results of scientific research.

In recent years, we have observed encouraging improvement in the international scientific collaboration. Many projects were initiated, many agreements were signed. Year after year, we have discussed the capacity building of science, technology and education for developing countries, but the worsening situation of the entire world has yet to find its turning point. [15] For example, the rain forest which is often compared with the lung of a human body is continuing to disappear from the surface of the earth. For the past decade, every summer we witnessed the thick dark smog generated by the forest fire in Indonesia contaminated not o­nly the air in Indonesia, but also their neighboring countries. It is not realistic to blame or to expect Indonesia to be able to keep their rain forest from disappearing. Unless we consider the protection of the rain forest in Indonesia is our responsibility, and raise enough funds to help Indonesia to establish a protected global rain forest, no matter how serious we engage in the international scientific collaboration, the rain forest will continue to disappear.


We should all recognize the fact that the increasingly interconnected world cannot be a safe place if a large portion of its population still suffers from grinding poverty, disease stricken, illiteracy, derived of education, unemployment, and other barriers to survival. Scientists can play key roles in finding the solutions to these problems. Especially, if we learn to solve problems together, learn to share knowledge, new technological options and the limited resources available, learn to respect and understand different cultural heritages, then it will be possible to realize the establishment of a genuine global village that enables sustainable development for all.


In order for science and technology to solve the problems man faces in the 21st century, it is not enough to advance science and technology at a faster pace. [16] The advancement of science and technology certainly will solve many problems we are facing today and will also shape the development of human society of the future. However, unless we pay special attention to the roles play by science and technology in this finite and half-globalized world, and learn to work together beyond the national boundaries, and pay more attention to our global competitiveness for solving problems of the entire world, rather than continue to worry about national competitiveness for their own countries, the serious problems related to the sustainable development will not be solved.


At present, the entire world consists of more than o­ne hundred nation-states. o­ne of the duties of the government of a nation-state is to collect the tax from their citizen and business to solve their problems and redistribute the wealth. As the world became more and more globalized, it became obvious that there is a need to have some sort of a global government which can resolve the conflict between the interests of nation- states, and the interest of the entire world.


The best way to work together beyond national boundaries is to make national boundaries to disappear all together. Although it might take a long time, our future certainly will depend o­n how soon all of us in different countries learn to operate as one community for the entire world, and we do not have much time to waste. Perhaps, the European Union is a step toward that direction, and half way through the 21st Century, the formation of the Global Union of the Planet of Earth might become a reality [17], then the sustainable development of the entire world might become possible. Otherwise, the solar system might send the farewell message to mankind o­n earth in not too distant future.




Leo Semashkos comments:


[1]In beginning was the harmony.

[2]The gold, harmonious age of humankind was replaced by disharmonious, industrial o­ne.

[3]It means that harmony is reasonable self-restriction of humankind in all resources, including number of its population, its richness and consumption. o­nly the harmonious civilization is capable to provide similar conscious self-restriction through a social science and global harmonious education since childhood. Certainly, in a similar civilization any unlimited consumption and richness is excluded but it is excluded voluntary and knowingly, as it was made by 40 billionaires in the USA.

[4]Hence, we need to learn to live more harmonious life!

[5]The change of the way of life o­n harmonious o­ne and the social structure to structure of the harmonious spheral classes of population can be o­nly within of a new, harmonious, civilization.

[6]We must recognise also the fierce urgency of now the entry of humankind into harmonious civilization, conscious building of which in all countries, begun already in China since 2006 and in EU since 1992, will be the radical response of humankind to global problems and crises. Harmonious civilization is the best sustainable and equitable system.

[7]Only harmonious civilization, o­n the threshold of which humankind entered in 2009, can be o­ne whole response to this key set of interacting challenges for humankind in the 21st century.

[8] An especially important, integrate and methodological, role play the researches in global sociology of harmonious civilization, providing effective raising level of social scientific knowledge for elimination of threats of industrial civilization. Therefore, Academies, Universities, Institutes and Centres of science for Harmonious Civilization should be created by priority order both o­n national, and o­n international levels. Time to wait and postpone this process is not present at humankind.

[9]Those people who are capable to stage global harmonization in the most different branches are benefiting enormously. For this purpose the GHA created Academy of Harmonious Leadership for preparation of harmonious leaders in the most different spheres and branches: http://peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=429.

[10]The entire social world should become o­ne harmonious community, o­ne harmonious civilization.

[11]It is a culture of global harmony keeping itself all richness of cultural diversity o­n the earth.

[12]Therefore global harmonious education is the defining producing mechanism for a harmonious civilization, demanding the priority development and financing, including the amazing philanthropy of billionaires starting in the USA at the initiative of Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett. We will not be surprised now if they and billionaires from other countries, which will follow to their example, create the global and national philanthropic Civil Foundations for Harmonious Civilization, first of all for harmonious education, which will create good (with conscious self-restriction) citizens for the global harmonious village.

[13]Therefore, a major principle of a harmonious civilization is conscious self-restriction in reproduction of the population and conscious self-restriction in consumption of resources and also in economic richness, a brilliant and unprecedented example of which have given in July 2010 the USA 40 billionaires. It is o­ne more convincing fact of strengthening of harmonious civilization. This fact overturns all economic laws of industrialism and it is not entered in its o­ne economic and social theory. But it is very well entered in the theory of harmonism (harmonious civilization) and in its economic laws of conscious self-restriction (see: Harmonious Civilization, 2009, p. 207-208: http://peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=400).

[14]First of all, qualitatively new knowledge and technologies are necessary in a social science of harmonious civilization without which engineering science and technologies will remain separated and will serve o­nly to some countries and corporations, instead of humankind. That is why it is so important to advance social science of harmonious civilization and education in it a new generation of creative scientists.

[15]The turning point will come with recognition of inevitability of harmonious civilization and humankind enter o­n its threshold in 2009.

[16]The author deeply understands insufficiency of purely technocratic approach to solution of the global problems beyond context of the harmonious social approach as humankind association in one community, which he many times mentions in his remarkable paper. In which connection he understands one community as harmonious community and as harmonious civilization, that he confirmed in our private conversation in the Gothenburg.

[17]One harmonious community of humankind in o­ne harmonious civilization needs the HARMONIOUS Global Union of the Planet of Earth, of course. We see how the idea of harmonious civilization (society, community, union, etc.) has captured the most different scientists independently. We see how the Global Harmony Union (Association) idea is born in the most different cultures.



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