Prakash Kashwan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science and Co-Director of the Research Program on Economic and Social Rights, Human Rights Institute, University of Connecticut, Storrs. He is the author of Democracy in the Woods: Environmental Conservation and Social Justice in India, Tanzania, and Mexico (Oxford University Press, 2017), an Associate Editor of the journal Progress in Development Studies (Sage Publishing), and an incoming Editor of the journal Environmental Politics. He has been appointed a member of the global expert group for Scoping of Transformative Change Assessment by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), and a Senior Research Fellow of the Earth System Governance (ESG) Project. He is also the co-founder of Climate Justice Network, which seeks to build bridges between academics, practitioners, and activists. He has also contributed popular commentaries to The Conversation, the Washington Post, the Guardian, and Africa Is A Country, among others. He is working currently on a book manuscript on Climate Justice, which is contracted with Oxford University Press.
Harriet Festing is Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Anthropocene Alliance, an organization that educates and organizes individuals and communities harmed by environmental abuse and climate change. As Co-Founder and Executive Director, Harriet is responsible for overseeing the nonprofit and its initiatives, Higher Ground and Vegan Power. Harriet has 25 years’ experience managing award winning programs that tackle climate change. Harriet’s experience stretches across diverse fields – water, energy, agriculture, housing – within government, nonprofits, and academic sectors in the United States and the United Kingdom.
Ian Mauro is a pioneer of multi-media methodologies, scholarship and education. He holds a BSc in Environmental Science and PhD in Geography and his work focuses on climate change, food security, industrial development and strategies to build vibrant, resilient, low carbon communities across scales. Ian uses participatory video to collect, communicate and conserve local and indigenous knowledge, an approach that allows people who live on the land to tell their own stories, in their own language, within the landscapes where their knowledge has been generated. As part of the participatory filmmaking process, David Suzuki and Ian Mauro toured throughout coastal BC on a “Listening Tour” that engaged citizens. Narrated by David Suzuki, Beyond Climate explores the human and environmental impacts of climate change in British Columbia, and is a timely contribution to the province and country as we grapple with climate change, the paramount issue of our time.
Dan McDougal is a British Foreign Correspondent of the Year, the UK equivalent of a Pulitzer Prize, an award he has been nominated for three-times. To date Dan has won four Amnesty International Awards for Human Rights Reporting – covering issues as diverse as child rape in South Africa, LGBT persecution in Syria, the plight of Europe’s Roma and Zimbabwe’s deadly trade in Blood Diamonds. As storytellers, we need to focus on the PRESENT – not the FUTURE and we need to go to the ends of the earth to tell stories. In terms of shaping our understanding of the human impact of climate change, it’s just too easy to get bogged down in science and projections of what might happen in 20 years – the reality is people are dramatically impacted by the climate crisis today. But many of them are hidden.Too many people also see the climate crisis as a slow-motion disaster, but that’s deceptive. This is unquestionably an urgent story and to tell it we need to focus on character-driven narratives – across drama and documentary – to do this in an effective way that has to be done in multiple languages and be cognizant of cultural differences. Across the world, people’s lives are changing for the worst at an alarming rate – I see it in refugee camps, I hear it in extended heartfelt interviews in the aftermath of natural disasters and I see it in the High Arctic or the Congolese Rainforest.
Diane Tuft is a mixed media artist who has been documenting the effects of climate change and global warming on Earth since 1998. In 2017 Tuft created a short film, titled ‘The Arctic Melt’. It was presented to numerous public audiences that year, including the March for Science on Earth Day in Washington D.C., the International Center of Photography in New York City, the Arctic Circle Assembly in Reykjavik, Iceland, and Marlborough Gallery in New York. In 2019, it was presented at the Multimedia Art Museum in Moscow and ROSPHOTO in St. Petersburg, Russia. Coastal Requiem is a short film that brings to focus the displacement of millions of people throughput the world due to rising tide caused by Global Warming and Climate Change. Diane will discuss Global Warming and its effect on rising tide. Through the arts, a broader audience can be reached in order to affect change in policy that will address the need to conserve and use renewable energy in order to save our planet.