HELIX Workshop: The Challenge of Communicating Unwelcome Climate Messages

An international workshop titled ‘The Challenge of Communicating Unwelcome Climate Messages’ took place on 16-17th April in Cambridge, UK. The event was organised by our sister project High-End cLimate Impacts and eXtremes (HELIX).

The chances of climate impacts worsening with average global temperature rise exceeds 2◦C – or even 4◦C - by mid-century, are increasing. With the increased plausibility of such prospect the question of how can these messages best expressed to the public arises. 

The aim of this workshop was to explore how scientists and communicators of science can be more than ‘narrators of doom’, but instead help to stimulate engagement and adaptive responses from policy makers, organisations and publics.

The workshop looked into what are the unwelcome messages from ‘beyond 2◦C’, to whom are they unwelcome, and why.  

Discussions focused on what are the best ways to engaging emotions of the public towards building personal resilience and facilitating positive responses to unwelcome climate change messages. Increasing engagement among policy makers and communicating politically inconvenient scientific findings were also among the highlighted themes of the workshop.

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