Promoting Wellbeing: What Works? – Charlie Woods

I recently attended a conference organised by ‘What Works Wellbeing’, which looked at the emerging evidence of what promotes wellbeing and quality of life for individuals and society more generally. The conference was organised around the themes of the What Works programme – work and learning, culture and sport, communities and cross cutting methods.

The idea behind a wellbeing focus is that it goes beyond narrow measures of economic output. Scotland’s National Performance Framework illustrated below is an excellent example of just such an approach.

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Storytelling for Resilience: Communicating Systemic Approaches to Climate Change

This timely and necessary programme brings together climate change adaptation specialists from across the natural and social sciences.  It identifies two central challenges for increasing resilience to extreme events: to make complex research results more accessible and tractable for decision-makers, and to acknowledge that decision-makers include the general public as they self-organise and respond to new local challenges, in parallel with policy and practice.  To address these challenges, it proposes a novel approach: storytelling for climate change adaptation.  Using state-of-the-art storytelling training, it will bring a fresh set of communication and engagement skills to climate change researchers and practitioners.  These skills will be applied by the wider community of climate change professionals, enhancing knowledge exchange activities.  It aims to demonstrate the efficacy of storytelling in bringing about real-world impact, through application to a specific case study with a flood-prone community.

Programme Team:

Melissa Bedinger (Heriot-Watt University) – Ergonomics, Socio-technical Systems and Climate Change
Esther Carmen (University of Dundee) – Science Policy and Practice Interfaces, Community Resilience
Professor Lindsay Beevers (Heriot-Watt University) – Civil Engineering and Water Management
Ioan Fazey (University of Dundee) – Environmental Change and Human Resilience
Alanah Knibb (Freelance Illustrator) – Art, Graphic Novels and Comics, Science Communication
Julia Bentz (University of Lisbon) – Climate Change Impacts, Adaptation, and Economics
Ingrid Coninx (Wageningen University) – Climate Adaptation and Policy Implementation Gaps