By Brecken Branstrator
brecken.branstrator@nationaljeweler.com
Chicago—The Chicago Responsible Jewelry Conference, like so many events this year, will move to an all-digital format for 2020.

The event is slated for Nov. 9-13. This year, organizers have also introduced a pay-what-you-can ticket scheme to encourage involvement from members of the industry.

The conference will start with a Responsible Gem Fair on the first day, in which eight organizations focused on responsible mining and social issues will share their stories and present the opportunity to buy gemstones directly from them.

This will be followed by four days of speakers.

Topic highlights include sustainable development goals for artisanal mining, the issues that still need to be addressed in large scale diamond mining, adding value in source countries, indigenous land rights, gender equity in artisanal and small-scale gold mining, responsible design, and more.

Presenters include such government and international organizations as the U.S. State Department and the United Nations, as well as NGOs and advocacy groups like Pact, Impact, Amazon Aid Foundation, the Centre for Environmental Policy and Advocacy, Human Rights Watch, the Kimberley Process Civil Society, and Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association.

There will also be sessions from jewelry associations and organizations; miners, mining community representatives, and organizations representing miner rights and concerns; and several jewelry brands, designers, and gem dealers.

Additionally, Nov. 10 will include an online group screening of the documentary “Maxima,” which follows Peruvian indigenous farmer Máxima Acuña in her fight to protect her land as she takes a stand against Newmont Mining Corporation, the world’s largest gold producer.


The screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Claudia Sparrow.

Launched in 2017, the Chicago Responsible Jewelry Conference aims to facilitate dialogue among participants of the industry’s supply chain and initiate action.

For more information about this year’s event or to register, visit 2020.CRJC.info.

All funds from tickets purchased will go to the Responsible Jewelry Transformative, the 501(c)(3) organization that produces the conference and supports responsible sourcing initiatives, like the virtual market connecting East African miners with buyers.


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