I haven’t blogged in a while, so I thought I’d write a catch-up post. Back in December, I went to Copenhagen as part of my dissertation research into WWF’s Arctic programs. The actual negotiations were locked down pretty tightly, but they were not the main focus of my research so it was OK that I didn’t get in. In fact, since the only agreement that came out of Copenhagen was drafted at the last minute by a small group of international leaders, I could argue that most of the delegates should have spent their time marching in the streets or attending public meetings. One thing that I realized in Copenhagen, though, is that my research is completely tied to climate change science, activism, and policy. There are certainly other issues in the Arctic, but climate change is the 800-lb gorilla.
I also want my research to be part of a more public anthropology. That means not confining my research to theoretical minutiae in academic journals, but instead doing research that has some significance for Jane Doe on the street. And so far, Jane Doe wants to hear about climate change, based on questions from family and friends. I’ll be giving a presentation to the local Exchange Club next week and to the local Quaker group a few weeks later. So, I throw it out to my handful of blog readers: what do you think I should include in a 20-minute presentation? My inclination is to just touch on the science of climate change and focus more on the different issues debated in Copenhagen: climate debt, market mechanisms, climate refugees, localization vs. globalization. Thoughts?