2009 CIS

October 6-7, 2009           At Water's Edge: Complacency, Thirst, Action

As a service to the community, all CIS events are free and open to the public.

For nearly 30 years the Critical Issues Symposium (CIS) has been an integral part of the Hope College academic landscape. A committee of faculty, staff, and students, in consultation with President Bultman, selects one topic to focus on each year. Hope College takes this academic endeavor seriously enough to cancel classes for a full day each fall semester in order to allow the campus community to fully participate in examining the topic at hand. CIS has sponsored international leaders in a variety of fields, but also calls on the resources of the West Michigan and Hope College communities to provide input on our discussions.


In 2009 , our focus was on Water.
Availability of fresh water is one of the most pressing world issues of our time.  In some parts of the world women and children spend five hours each day searching for water. For those who live in a place like Holland, Michigan, it is hard to imagine water scarcity. Neither do we pay attention to the pollutants which daily poison our water sources, nor do we consider the interest that other States have in taking water from the Great Lakes region to meet their thirsty, growing populations. We invite your participation at what promises to be a thought-provoking and timely Critical Issues Symposium.  
October 6-7, 2009
March 8, 2010

We are fortunate to have two world-class water experts, Peter Gleick and Joan Rose, as keynote speakers. Please follow the links for more information about these outstanding scholars and their work. In addition, several focus sessions are planned, to further engage us on the issues raised by our keynote speakers, as well as departmental sessions on how water issues impact the work of professors and students in the fields of Art, Communications, English, Engineering, Political Science, Sociology, and Women's Studies. Please navigate to the Schedule area for more information about these sessions.

Robert Glennon
Knickerbocker Theater
7:00 pm

Robert Glennon is the author of Unquenchable: America’s Water Crisis and What To Do About It, which was published in April 2009 by Island Press. 

Click here for more information about Dr. Glennon and the upcoming lecture.


NEW: Sustainable Hope Water Bottles

Hope's Sustainability Advisory Committee and Environmental Issues Group would like to
encourage the use of water bottles on campus. The new bottles are hard plastic,
imprinted with the sustainable Hope logo.

Available for purchase in the Bookstore,
and during lunch at CIS at the EIG Table
in the hallway between Maas and Phelps Dining

To encourage the Hope community to buy and use these bottles,
Dining Services has agreed to some incentives for using the water bottle to obtain your drinks:

Kletz soft drinks, iced tea, lemonade and Crystal Light will cost $.75.

Kletz juice will cost $1.50 and DeVos soft drinks will cost $.75.

Thanks for your participation.


If you have any questions about CIS please feel free to contact either:

Alfredo Gonzales, Associate Provost and CIS Co-Chair

Derek Emerson, Director of Events and Conferences and CIS Co-Chair

Picture Credit to Katherine Sullivan, Assistant Professor of Art at Hope College from her Seascape Series