COMM056 Key Concepts in Climate Communication


Course Description

Climate communication has evolved from debating the reality of human-caused climate change to facing the urgent challenge of mobilizing entire public in the project of massive climate action. Have you ever wondered how to start or respond to a conversation about climate? Is it possible to communicate about climate adaptation in a way that inspires people? This course addresses these questions, equipping learners with key concepts for effective communication as well as best practices and guidance from leading climate communication experts and researchers.


Course Outline

This course is about communication principles (messaging, audience, impact) and the latest thinking in the climate communication agenda – which is examining how to mobilize public through engagement and artful communication content. Communication is a creative force that shapes and colours every aspect of climate research, action, and activism. The course is about equipping audiences with self-efficacy and showing them ways to participate in climate adaptation. It’s about how to engage with people so that they are more likely to change their attitudes and behaviours, with an emphasis on maintaining and sustaining social connection. The last week of this course will include a module that will give learners some strategic communication skills that they can apply in numerous contexts (work, personal, etc.) in relation to specific goals. Learners will also keep up to date with climate communication researchers and practitioners so that they become aware of the knowledge hubs and gain confidence in how to apply these concepts in order to create change.


Learner Outcomes

  • Understand communication as a field of knowledge and practice, and appreciate its ethical dimensions;

  • Explore climate communication as a dynamic and specialized field with its own concepts, challenges, and best practices;

  • Incorporate concepts of framing, narrative, and visual communication to develop authentic connections with targeted audiences, for the purpose of enhancing individual and collective adaptive capacity and action;

  • Identify climate communication specialist and resource hubs to support understanding and ongoing engagement;

  • Apply basic strategic communication principles to analyze case studies and inform the communication of adaptation projects.


Applies Towards the Following Certificates

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