GROWTH in the focus of the Tolerance Talks 2023

Climate change forces a rethink

Increasing consumption, limited resources – the future of our economy is on the test bench. Under the title “Growth in the end – What now?” ethical and ecological-economic perspectives will be presented at the 9th European Tolerance Talks from May 24th to 27th, 2023 in the Carinthian mountain village of Fresach. More than 30 experts from the fields of philosophy and religion, business and science will take part in the debate.

The global growth problem and its negative consequences for the ecological balance and biodiversity nowadays take up a lot of space in the political and economic development process. The advancing climate change and the global efforts to move away from fossil fuels inevitably lead to the question of whether the striving for more and the almost religiously formulated orientation towards growth are still justified. The organizers of Denk.Raum.Fresach are trying to provide answers.

Wednesday May 24: Ethics Forum at Bambergsaal Villach

At the start of the tolerance talks in Villach, the former council chairman of the Evangelical Church in Germany, Nikolaus Schneider, has his say. He advocates a different concept of growth and provides alternative ideas for an economic system based on solidarity with social and ethical standards. The pursuit of profit does not make mankind happy, says Schneider. It only widens the gap between rich and poor and endangers the cohesion in our society as well as the democratic structures. (Bamberg-Saal Villach, from 6.30 p.m., conversation with Renata Schmidtkunz, ORF)

Thursday May 25: European forum with Marlene Streeruwitz

The controversial essayist, feminist and filmmaker Marlene Streeruwitz was won for the opening of the Europaforum in Fresach on May 25th at 9 a.m. She will ask what a new culture of growth could look like from a European perspective. This is followed by attractive panels on the foundations for a new ecological and social world order without fossil fuels, on the perspectives of the emerging countries and the search for new narratives for a different growth from a literary or theological point of view. (Museum Fresach, from 9 a.m.).

Among the guests are well-known visionaries such as the German TV presenter and bestselling author Franz Alt, the public welfare expert Christian Felber, the researcher of meaning and values Paul M. Zulehner and the sustainability researcher Christine Ax, but also practitioners such as the Africa incubator Tara Méité, the climate protector Lena Schilling and th former Austrian evangelical bishop Michael Bünker. The Tolerance Prize 2023 of the city of Villach for democracy and human rights will be awarded in Fresach on Thursday evening.

Friday May 26: Green Deal Business Forum

The Economic Forum in Fresach on May 26th will open with a talk by the Frankfurt historian and his student Michael Paul about “The Everlasting Revolution” of capitalism, followed by a talk with the Munich financial investor Hans Albrecht about the diverse opportunities of transformation within the framework of the Green Deals in response to climate change. In the afternoon, the Graz mathematician Georg Brasseur will show what the CO2-free future for the planet could look like. (Museum Fresach, from 9 a.m.).

The most important parameters for healthy growth and the restructuring of industry are on the program in the subsequent panel, in which the British climate philosopher Graham Parkes, Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce Astrid Legner and AK globalization expert Valentin Wedl will take part. Other highlights include a conversation about strategies for transformation with management coach Ruth Seliger and a Carinthian discussion with the poet Egyd Gstättner.

Help, we’re getting shrunk

Young poetry slammers will conclude the tolerance talks on Friday evening from 6.30 p.m. – on the subject of “post-growth economy” or “What would the world look like if there was no more growth?” And of course the traditional tolerance breakfast on Saturday, May 27 (from 8.30 a.m.), to which all speakers, participants and visitors are invited. Day tickets are available from 60 euros, and there is a 50 percent discount for students and teachers at Carinthian schools and universities.

Overview of the program points

24th May, 2023: 6.30 p.m.: Ethics Forum Villach (Bambergsaal)
25th May, 2023: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.: Europaforum Fresach. 6.30 p.m.: Tolerance award ceremony
May, 2023: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.: Fresach Business Forum. 6:30 p.m.: Poetry Slam
27th May, 2023: 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Gasthaus Zum Wirt, Fresach: Tolerance breakfast

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