GCAP Blog

Bringing innovation to practice in adapting to climate change.
Nov
10

8th November - the second day of COP22 - a context to the proceedings

8th November - the second day of COP22 - a context to the proceedings
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In this summary of the second day at COP22 in Marrakech, Tom Downing explores the present focus and some of the history and context to the process and the key goals for this year.  However, as he says, overnight the world changed.  A new US president, Donald Trump, was elected.  A man who has said that climate change is a myth created by the Chinese...

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Nov
08

7th November - The first day of COP22 - Key messages & focus

7th November - The first day of COP22 - Key messages & focus
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The first day of COP22 might have been dominated by the exciting news that over 55 countries had signed up to the Paris Agreement from 2015, and so, that milestone having been met, on November 4th the Agreement became binding.  Perhaps more important still, that had led to a renewed zeal for others to do so, and to-date over 100 countries have joined.  Had this tipping point not been reached the business of COP22 would probably have been very different.  So the air of some presentations was definitely celebratory.  But not all...

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Nov
06

6th November - on the eve of COP22 - a quick summary

6th November - on the eve of COP22 - a quick summary
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We thought it might be of interest to our network of partners if we were to try to follow progress at this year's COP, in Marrakech, by recording short voice-blogs generally every evening.  The conference runs from tomorrow, the 7th, to the 18th of November.  We may not have much to report on some evenings, but we will try to keep you up to date. To begin with, I thought I'd try to set the scene, and along the way to explain a few of the terms and acronyms used as I'm aware that some of us are not approaching this event from a climate perspective and perhaps for the first time.  Please use the comments space below to share your thoughts and ideas of this and subsequent summaries. Thank you, Graham. About us Established in 2010, GCAP (http://climateadaptation.cc) ranks among the top 10 leading climate think tanks globally, providing knowledge services related to national adaptation investment and finance, climate economics, climate adaptation strategy and planning and climate risk screening.  A world class organisation, we support managers holding over $1 billion in funds.  Our flagship, Oxford Adaptation Academy (http://www.climateadaptation.cc/our-work/adaptation-academy), is a unique incubator for leadership and innovation within the field of climate adaptation. Dr Graham Wilson leads the personal development and leadership strand of the Adaptation Academy.  With a background in ethology and behavioural science, he is an Executive, Leadership and Political Confidant, Tutor in Psychology and Counselling with the University of Oxford, and Co-Director of the Oxford Adaptation Academy.  His research interests include coaching and visual anthropology.  [LinkedIn = http://tinyurl.com/drgwli] 
Nov
01

Personal experience of extreme weather leads to wider understanding of climate change issues

Personal experience of extreme weather leads to wider understanding of climate change issues
In the OAA (Oxford Adaptation Academy) each year, we explore the nature of personal leadership and how it impacts on the behaviour of both small and large groups.  One of the perceived wisdoms that often surfaces is that when people are personally stressed they are more likely to think first of themselves than of others.  While this might be true of people who are experiencing a personal stress factor, such as a life-changing event or change in their personal circumstances, it isn't true of people in a community experiencing the same factor.  In the aftermath of a natural disaster, for example, many people put their own needs to one side and seek to help those around them regardless.  What isn't often appreciated is that their selflessness goes beyond the immediate situation.  They become more engaged with the wider nature of their problem and how it is impacting others from different communities.  This paper suggests that, if we wish to engage people in an understanding of global climate change-related themes, we would be well advised to look at ways of helping them 'experience' their own local ones first.A similar approach was adopted by the British Heart Foundation recently.  They stopped people on the streets and invited them to experience what it was like to have a heart attack.  They were led up some steps into a black room and the door was shut.  People who emerged were visibly shocked, and prepared to listen to the charity's key messages.Graham WilsonImage: ¬© 2016 Dr Graham Wilson (This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.)Demski, C., Capstick, S., Pidgeon, N. et al. (2016) Experience of extreme weather affects climate change mitigation and adaptation responses. Climatic Change. doi:10.1007/s10584-016-1837-4AbstractThe winter of 2013/2014 saw a series of severe storms hit the UK, leading to widespread flooding, a major emergency response and extensive media exposure. Previous research indicates that experiencing extreme weather events has the potential to heighten engagement with climate change, however the process by which this occurs remains largely unknown, and establishing a clear causal relationship from experience to perceptions is methodologically challenging. The UK winter flooding offered a natural experiment to examine this question in detail. We compare individuals personally affected by flooding (n = 162) to a nationally representative sample (n = 975). We show that direct experience of flooding leads to an overall increased salience of climate change, pronounced emotional responses and greater perceived personal vulnerability and risk perceptions. We also present the first evidence that direct flooding experience can give rise to behavioural intentions beyond individual sustainability actions, including support for mitigation policies, and personal climate adaptation in matters unrelated to the direct experience.About us Established in 2010, GCAP (http://climateadaptation.cc) ranks among the top 10 leading climate think tanks globally, providing knowledge services related to national adaptation investment and finance, climate economics, climate adaptation strategy and planning and climate risk screening.  A world class organisation, we support managers holding over $1 billion in funds.  Our flagship, Oxford Adaptation Academy (http://www.climateadaptation.cc/our-work/adaptation-academy), is a unique incubator for leadership and innovation within the field of climate adaptation. Dr Graham Wilson leads the personal development and leadership strand of the Adaptation Academy.  With a background in ethology and behavioural science, he is an Executive, Leadership and Political Confidant, Tutor in Psychology and Counselling with the University of Oxford, and Co-Director of the Oxford Adaptation Academy.  His research interests include coaching and visual anthropology.  [LinkedIn = http://tinyurl.com/drgwli] 
Oct
31

M&E in a changing world

Our approach is rooted in complexity--navigating complex landscapes, making decisions when outcomes are unknown, learning from practice. A few years ago we pioneered an approach to M&E that extends our practice to managing project performance recognizing quite diverse contexts.  John Colvin led our contribution on this them for a UNEP/GEF report, under the auspices of Anand Patwardhan (GEF STAP member).  The synthesis paper will be out later this year. We also have an earlier booklet.

The approach recognizes different contexts: what you can learn depends on the context, as does what you monitor to support learning and future practice.

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So, I enjoyed reading the report to the GEF Council that cites this work as one of the major contributions of STAP to changing the world (if we take that as the GEF mission). Kudos to all the contributors who shared insights and helped shape the way forward in a field that is both technical and contextual. 

 

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