Learnshop on Tensions Model to Negotiate with Environmental Stakeholders at GLBD 2018 Conference

I was privileged to facilitate a “Learn shop” at the 14th annual conference of the Great Lakes Bioneers Detroit, targeted primarily at regional leaders working toward environmental sustainability. My own contribution centered on helping learnshop participants use communication theory to engage multiple stakeholders amid the “wicked problems” of environmental sustainability. Drawing from my research, I proposed a Tensions Model centered on recognizing how tensions can be more than just headaches, but can be used constructively once we take the time to appreciate the situation holistically from multiple perspectives. Specifically, the learnshop used four “tension areas” as the starting point to help analyze different problems in small groups.

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Climate change response in Alaska: “Do, but don’t talk”?

The other day, I read a news report about how Siberian policymakers are “lukewarm” about the impacts of global warming — or, more accurately, Russian policymakers are lukewarm, whereas local Siberian scientists are sounding the alarm — and it reminded me of the interesting rhetorical response to the same issue in Alaska, a U.S. state that is similarly dependent on fossil fuel extraction, and similarly hungry for infrastructure development.

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