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(Hybrid) Warming Up with Madeleine Orr

Wed May 15 @ 19 h 30 - 20 h 30


Ahead of the upcoming Jeux Olympiques in Paris this summer, climate advocate and sports researcher Madeleine Orr joins us to discuss the effects of climate change on the sporting world.

We have all seen the headlines. At the Australian Tennis Open in early 2020, heat and smoke from bushfires caused players to collapse. Skiers across Europe have canceled trips to mountain resorts due to an unsettling dearth of snow. And extreme heat killed hundreds, if not thousands  of migrant workers who were building infrastructure for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Temperatures have reached new heights around the world, dramatically altering the experience of sporting events for players, fans, and support staff alike.

In her book Warming Up: How Climate Change Is Changing Sport, Madeleine Orr marshals her unique academic background in sports management and ecological research to consider the implications of a warming climate for one of the largest entertainment industries in the world.

The conversation will be moderated by UNESCO’s Director of Social Polices, Gustavo Merino.

About the speakers:

Madeleine Orr is a leading sport ecologist and professor at the University of Toronto. A Forbes 30 under 30 inductee, she is the founder and co-director of The Sport Ecology Group, who consult on international climate issues for sports organizations such as the Commonwealth Secretariat, the UNEP, World Athletics, Adidas, F1 teams, and the NCAA. Madeleine has worked closely with the BBC and ESPN to further public understanding of climate issues in sport. She is a 2023–24 Future of Canada Fellow. www.madeleineorr.com

Gustavo Merino has been the Director of Social Polices at UNESCO since January 2024. Previously he was Leader of the Public Policy Unit at the Institute for Obesity Research and as Research Professor and Leader of the Public Policy Health Initiative at the School of Government and Public Transformation of Tecnológico de Monterrey, where he was also Dean of the School of Social Sciences and Government for Mexico City Region. Prior to that, he was Director of the Investment Center Division at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). He has held senior positions in the Government of Mexico including Deputy Minister of Social and Human Development, Deputy Minister for Prospective, Planning and Evaluation and Head of the Planning and International Affairs Unit at the Ministry of Social Development. He was also CEO of Mexico’s national development bank for agriculture and rural areas, Financiera Rural. Dr. Merino has also been a Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Public Policy Research at Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de Mexico (ITAM) in Mexico City and a consultant in the field of social development, public finance and competition policy. He has a master’s and PhD in Public Policy from Harvard University and a BA in Economics from ITAM.

Learn more:

A BBC article titled “What Would a Greener World Cup Look Like?” draws heavily upon Orr’s work. Read the article here.

Orr appeared as a guest in a 2022 episode of the podcast The Bunker to discuss the ecological future of the Olympics. You can listen to the podcast here.

Important information: The discussion will be available both online and in person. While the conversation will happen in person (the speakers will appear in the Reading Room), the Library will stream the conversation on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.

Attendance at this event constitutes permission for your photograph or video to be taken at the event and used by the American Library in Paris for marketing, promotional, pedagogical, or other purposes.

Read along with the Library! If you want to prepare ahead of this event, copies of Warming Up will be on sale one week in advance, as well as after the event. Stop by Member Services to purchase your copy. Books are generously provided by Smith&Son.

Attendees will have the opportunity to have their copy signed following the conversation.

Evenings with an Author are free and open to the public (with a 10€ suggested donation)
thanks to the generous support of Gregory Annenberg Weingarten of GRoW @ Annenberg.


Wed May 15
19 h 30 min - 20 h 30 min
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(Hybrid) Warming Up with Madeleine Orr
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