Be Inspired

Ensia Live brings environmental visionaries to the Twin Cities for evenings filled with engaging ideas and entertainment. Presenters will open your eyes and enrich your mind as they showcase environmental solutions in action. Encompassing science, arts, design and more, Ensia Live inspires new ways of looking at the world and our place in it.

Relive Ensia Live on Twitter with #ensialive.

Spring Event Dates Have Passed

Spring Speakers


Watch Jamais’ talk.

Futurist Jamais Cascio on stage at Ensia Live

Photo by Josh Kohanek.

Cutting carbon emissions won’t be the end of the climate change story. It’s just the beginning. In this compelling talk – “Bots, Bacteria and Carbon” – internationally renowned futurist Jamais Cascio explored the potential course of planet Earth over the next 50 years, painting a picture of what a sustainable, resilient world could look like. Working with multiple future scenarios, he showed the often-unexpected ways in which the choices we make today will shape the decades to come.

Cascio’s presentation was complemented by an aerial arts performance by Ribnic Circus featuring the eclectic stylings of musician and aerialist Kelsey Long and aerialist, dancer and contortionist Caitlin Marion.

Sustainability Expert PEGGY LIU

Watch Peggy’s talk.

Portrait: Peggy Liu.

Photo provided by Peggy Liu.

Today China has over 300 million middle class consumers – but that number is expected to grow to more than 800 million by 2025. These changes will put unprecedented pressure on our Earth’s limited natural resources. In this thought-provoking presentation, Peggy Liu, co-founder of the Shanghai-based nonprofit organization JUCCCE and a Time magazine Hero for the Environment, explored efforts she’s leading to re-imagine prosperity and reshape consumerism in China by building a new “China Dream” that preserves resources such as energy, food, land and water for future generations. She also discussed how myth-creation, mass media and collaboration will be keys to transforming lifestyles in China, and around the world.

Along with Liu’s talk, the evening offered a performance by the Twin Cities Women’s Choir. Cutting across musical genres, cultures and traditions, the choir sang the value of women as leaders, performers, thinkers, artists and heroes, as well as environmental advocates.

Global Architect PETER WILLIAMS

Watch Peter’s talk.

Portrait: Peter Williams.

Photo by Michael Weschler.

As 60 million people move into cities each year in developing countries, London- and New York-based architect, social entrepreneur and humanitarian Peter Williams showed in this inspiring talk why our planet’s rapid urbanization requires us to think in an entirely new way about design, development and disease. Using stunning visuals and personal stories, Williams took the audience on a tour of the globe from Nigeria to India, Cameroon to Jamaica — and points in between — as he explored this 21st century challenge in a way that refuses to consider living conditions and human health separately, arguing instead for a systemic approach and showing how a greater appreciation of architecture’s role in human well-being could transform the world.

Williams is executive director and founder of Architecture for Health in Vulnerable Environments (ARCHIVE), an international charity focused on designing and building housing that prevents illness and provides care to the world’s poor.

Accompanying his talk was a performance by visual artist Gregory Euclide and musician S. Carey of Bon Iver.


Photo of Ted Mann Concert Hall, University of Minnesota - by Patrick O'Leary

Ted Mann Concert Hall
2128 Fourth Street South
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Map and directions


Thank you to our generous media partners and sponsors for their support of Ensia Live. For additional sponsorship opportunities, please contact Todd Reubold.

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