Pato Gonzalez-Marquez

Patricio (Pato) Gonzalez-Marquez is an ISCN Intern, currently completing a Master of Arts in Climate Action Leadership at Royal Roads University. Pato was born in Mexico City and immigrated to Canada at the age of 15 years old. Now, based in Victoria, British Columbia, Pato is a self-proclaimed climate nerd with a deep passion for communications and environmental psychology.

Big Idea(s) for Advancing Sustainability in Higher Education

What does the world need most right now?

The world is in desperate need of empathy and connection. The increasing polarization of ideas regarding climate change has made it difficult to understand one another. Policies, actions, or ideas supported by some are heavily opposed by others, sometimes creating rivalries more divisive than a football match. However, a clear image may not be as clear when seen from a different perspective.

I believe our lack of understanding for others’ perspectives has created an environment where we look for those we agree with and alienate those who don’t. Finding common ground, as difficult as it may be, is crucial for solving a common problem. Perhaps learning from those with opposing perspective is the best way to understand and address everyone’s needs in the face of an uncertain future. Empathy and connection for one another and our shared planet is a must.

Leadership and Inspiration

What does excellent leadership look like to you?

Excellent leadership can take many forms. I believe excellent leadership is primarily characterized by the ability to influence others to achieve a common goal. It is the ability to help others achieve a common objective, regardless of the obstacles in the way. However, in a world with overwhelming uncertainty, leadership becomes increasingly difficult. The skills of a good leader will be different depending on the task at hand, but a good leader will always guide others towards a common goal, especially in the face of uncertainty. Therefore, excellent leadership is to navigate unpredictable challenges and master uncertainty to achieve a common goal.

Tenacity and Perseverance

The Climate Emergency we face feels like the greatest challenge of our lifetime – what keeps you inspired?

In the face of imminent climate disruption what keeps me inspired are the people close to me. Spending time with friends and family, especially outdoors, takes my mind off the hardships of enduring climate action. Caring for others and enjoying our shared interests helps me cope with the difficulties of the climate emergency and keeps me inspired to continue striving towards actionable solutions.

Fun Fact

Favorite activity in your spare time?

In my spare time, my favourite activity is training my dog Olly and going on long hikes with him. I love teaching Olly new tricks and seeing how excited he gets when exploring new places.