Silver Donald Cameron

Welcome to Silver Donald Cameron’s blog! Dr Cameron is the author of 19 books and of many plays, films, magazine articles, radio and TV scripts. He is currently the host and executive producer of and of its feature documentary, Green Rights: The Human Right to a Healthy World. In 2019, he was appointed the first Farley Mowat Chair in Environment at Cape Breton University, where he earlier served as professor, dean and writer-in-residence. He currently teaches an on-campus/online course called Green Rights.

Bhutan in Toronto

I just delivered a profusely-illustrated keynote speech called “Bhutan: The Pursuit of Gross National Happiness” at a 300-person conference of the Canadian Organic Growers, Toronto chapter. The reaction was really gratifying. People found the talk both fresh and inspiring – someone, somewhere is doing things right! — and although many in the audience had heard something about this tiny country and its dedication to a better way of doing business and measuring progress, they didn’t know any specifics about it. The organizers were very happy; they said the presentation was a perfect kick-off for their conference.

I’m not a profound authority on Bhutan, but I spent three working weeks there, read a good deal about it, did a lot of interviews, attended a conference on Education for GNH, met several members of the government, and travelled to various parts of the country, so I had some solid first-hand experience to relate. Bhutan is not a paradise, but it’s a unique and delightful place, and it is earnestly striving to find a truly sustainable path for human life on the planet. That means it matters to all of us.

As I told a questioner – there were lots of questions – it was only the second time I’ve ever landed somewhere and felt a deep resonance between the values of the community and my own deepest values.  The first occasion was when I arrived in Nova Scotia in 1967, and I’ve lived in Nova Scotia more or less continuously ever since.

Public speaking is part of the way I earn my living, and I’m always on the alert for opportunities. I’ve given this presentation twice now, and I’d love to do it again. If you’re organizing a gathering and you think this might work as a keynote, let’s talk.