Communicating climate change

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What is the best way to create written or spoken materials that really inspire people?

Language  is absolutely critical to communicating effectively about climate change, and Talking Climate contains a series of guides to effective climate change communication.

Individual words and longer phrases are important – avoiding jargon, and knowing how an audience is likely to respond to particular terms is essential. This guide describes the most effective methods for communicating climate change.

But effective communication is about more than just picking the right words – the way messages are framed, the values they speak to and the narratives that bring the climate change message alive are incredibly powerful. Getting to grips with the growing body of research on how to use framing to effectively target particular attitudes and behaviours is essential.

Many climate change communicators spend a great deal of time countering the arguments of those who do not accept the science of climate change. However, there is now a growing body of evidence that climate change scepticism is not really about climate science – it is about people’s political viewpoints and worldviews, which the science of climate change seems to challenge. This guide describes the social science research that is getting to the bottom of the real reasons for climate scepticism, while this section outlines the key messages from studies of public perceptions of climate change.

The media are an important influence on public attitudes towards climate change, and this guide provides an introduction to media reporting on climate change, while the most effective ways of using images to communicate climate change are outlined here. And our comprehensive list of climate change communication resources available online contains a number of essential resources for creating effective written or spoken materials.

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This website, a project of Climate Outreach (COIN), has been integrated into the new Climate Outreach website. Any updates since 21 October 2015 have been made to the new website only, not here, and this website will soon be deleted. Please bookmark our new website – we look forward to continuing to share the latest in climate communication research with you. We are now tweeting from @climateoutreach so please follow us there.