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William Powers

William Powers has worked for two decades in development aid and conservation in Latin America, Africa, and North America. From 2002 to 2004 he managed the community components of a project in the Bolivian Amazon that won a 2003 prize for environmental innovation from Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. His essays and commentaries on global issues have appeared in the New York Times and the International Herald Tribune and on National Public Radio’s Fresh Air. Powers has worked at the World Bank and holds international relations degrees from Brown and Georgetown. A third-generation New Yorker, Powers has also spent two decades exploring the American culture of speed and its alternatives in some fifty countries around the world. He has covered the subject in his four books and written about it in the Washington Post and the Atlantic. Powers is a senior fellow at the World Policy Institute and an adjunct faculty member at New York University. His website is


Living Simply No Matter Where You Are: A Talk with William Powers, Author of New Slow City

Why did you write this book?

New Slow City: Living Simply in the World's Fastest City originated with a somewhat...

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Opt Out of the American Dream? Author William Powers talks about his book DISPATCHES FROM THE SWEET LIFE

My howl for help echoes into the silence. Incensed, I kick a rock, which sails over the edge of the bluff upon which I’m marooned and tumbles toward the river below.

I hear a rustling as the rock flushes out a duck like none I’ve ever seen. The...

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What's Your 12 x 12? An article by William Powers

I returned to America after a decade of aid and conservation work in Africa and Latin America. Abroad, I’d seen, starkly, the grave impact the global economic system was having on our environment—Amazon rainforests clear-cut for fast-food cattle, African rivers...

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Meet William Powers, author of Twelve by Twelve

Why did you decide to retreat to a 12’ by 12’ house with no electricity or running water?

Because of Dr. Jackie Benton. The first time I met this slight sixty-year-old physician, in March 2007, she was stroking a honey bee’s wings in front of her...

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