Max Boykoff - Director of CSTPR at CU Boulder - joins the show to discuss how to communicate successfully on climate change, the different types of strategies that can reach different audiences in different contexts and combining authenticity, accuracy and humor.
Today's You've Been Warmed episode features Max Boykoff - The Director of the Center For Science & Technology Policy Research at the University of Colorado Boulder.
Max also researches & teaches science-policy & society at the same University and he is the author of 'Creative (Climate) Communications' - a book that examines what mix of communication strategies can be effective in inspiring people to take action on climate change in an effort to recapture a common ground on the topic within the public arena.
Throughout the episode Max impressed me with very thoughtful and well articulated answers that give a balanced view on climate communication while not offering a silver bullet that can solve everything. Instead he advocates for a 'silver buckshot' approach where a number of strategies reach different audiences in different contexts.
We spoke at large about the role the media plays and how it covers the effects of climate change - in fact one of the projects Max leads, called the 'Media and Climate Change Observatory' analyses this quantitatively and qualitative, which uniquely positions him to give an informed observation on the topic.
We dove into why authenticity and accuracy when it comes to communicating the effects of climate change is extremely important, but why we also have to combine that with inspiring visions & stories that can get people to take action rather than make them feel lonely and hopeless. We also spoke about the role that humor plays in climate communication and how it can erase some of the partisan issues that might arise from approaching the subject.
I probably cannot do this episode justice by trying to summarise the points more here, so I invite you to have a listen to our chat!
MAX'S RELEVANT LINKS
Max's Twitter - https://twitter.com/boykoff
'Creative (Climate) Communications' Book - https://www.cambridge.org/us/academic/subjects/earth-and-environmental-science/environmental-policy-economics-and-law/creative-climate-communications-productive-pathways-science-policy-and-society?format=PB&isbn=9781316646823
TIMECODES (to be changed)
3:50 - His Background & Climate Journey
8:57 - How Is Climate Change Perceived Now?
17:10 - What Is The Balance Between Fear And Solutions
22:52 - Using Storytelling, Humor, Authenticity & More
32:10 - How Well Do Climate Activists Communicate?
38:12 - Science vs Society vs Politics vs Business
RELEVANT LINKS FROM THIS EPISODE
Katharine Hayhoe - https://twitter.com/KHayhoe
Ed Maibach - https://twitter.com/maibached
Media and Climate Change Observatory - https://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/icecaps/research/media_coverage/index.html
'Inside The Greenhouse' at University of Colorado Boulder - https://insidethegreenhouse.org/