With Peter Singer, I could have picked several topics relevant to sustainability leadership: veganism, vegetarianism, and charity come to mind, as does my post about him six months ago, Fixing Peter Singer’s drowning child analogy for sustainability. The day before recording, I saw him speak live and asked during the question-and-answer period at the end about not flying.
He answered thoughtfully and reflectively, not with the usual reactivity and emotional intensity most people do, protecting their feelings of guilt and shame, as I see them (I wrote The reason you feel judged isn’t because environmentalists are judging you. It’s because you have a conscience.) Several audience members told me they appreciated my asking the question. So when we spoke after he finished his stage performance, I asked if he’d mind following up the question in our podcast conversation.
So we spoke in more depth about flying versus not flying. I think I can safely say we both learned from each other, though I think he hasn’t spoken with many people who have stopped flying to gain from their experience.
Coincidentally, his talk on stage was fireside chat-style with podcast guest AJ Jacobs. Small world. If you like intelligent, thoughtful conversation, check out Think Inc., the company that organized the talk. They host events with many speakers who are peers.