Talking About Climate Change in a Pandemic

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mssi-tickets@unimelb.edu.au

Webinar

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With catastrophic bushfires at the beginning of this year, immediate climate change action was at the forefront of many Australians’ minds. But attention quickly shifted to addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. Given that the pandemic dominates our headlines, how should we have conversations about climate change?

In her recent book How to Talk About Climate Change in a Way That Makes a Difference, Dr Rebecca Huntley shows why simply educating people about climate science is not enough. Understanding our emotional reactions to climate change - why it makes us anxious, fearful, angry or detached - is critical to coping on an individual level and developing strategic collective action.

In this seminar she discusses the main themes of the book, and extends this to the current challenges we face in the midst of a global pandemic. Dr Huntley draws on her extensive social science research and explores effective climate change communications strategies in a time of compounding crises. She shows the importance of understanding emotions, sentiment, and sociality in order to communicate effectively for action on climate change.

About the Speaker

Dr Rebecca Huntley is one of Australia's most experienced social researchers and former director of The Mind and Mood Report, the longest running measure of the nation's attitudes and trends. She has a background in publishing, academia and politics, and holds degrees in law and film studies and a PhD in Gender Studies. She is a member of Climate Reality Project, and also delivered the 2019 MSSI Oration on Renewing Democracy in a Time of Environmental Crisis.