Evolution: Climate crisis as an Opportunity

Man-made climate change has triggered a crisis that has brought tremendous changes, but which also allows Europe to grow, innovate and break new ground. But to face the challenges, the old continent must allow new diversity in society and culture. That was the basic tenor of the panel discussion on the program presentation of the European Tolerance Talks 2020 in the Vienna Oberbank. This year’s theme is “Exodus – Leaving the Familiar”.

“Diversity creates innovation”

Behavioral biologist Elisabeth Oberzaucher compared the current situation with that of our ancestors in the Ice Age. “They opted for the exodus and became nomads. By migrating in large groups, they were able to survive. They allowed diversity. This always resulted in conflicts, but by solving them, humanity was able to develop like never before,” explained the scientist who teaches at the University of Vienna, also known for her appearances as “Science Buster”.

With the current climate change, there is likely to be an exodus again, said the evolutionary biologist. But this time, people immigrate mainly to Europe to survive. This development can be uncomfortable for spoiled Europeans, since conflicts and renunciation are inevitable. But diversity also has great potential. “As a result, our ancestors became more resilient and developed further. We can learn a lot from them today. Through diversity, we can compensate for each other’s weaknesses and create innovations by confronting others,” said Oberzaucher.
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