Climate change and the media: time to turn the page?


Image: Screen grab from

How has climate change been made into a form of public knowledge? I’m giving a keynote at the Deutscher Geographentag 2013 in Passau this Saturday.  I will draw on some past academic research as well as my experience of advising on programmes, designing and facilitating seminars for media and specialists and co-commissioning broadcast and online content related to climate change. I’ll be exploring the specific challenges of representing climate change knowledge, debates and actions in the context of substantial changes in media culture and practice.  I’ll be drawing on some of the following references, as well as an essay I’m working on that I’ll post here in short form in a week or two.

Smith, Joe (2013). Media coverage of tipping points: searching for a balanced story. In: O’Riordan, Tim and Lenton, Tim eds. Addressing Tipping Points for a Precarious Future. Proceedings of the British Academy. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press / British Academy

Pre publication draft available at:

Smith, Joe (2011) Why climate change is different: six elements that are shaping the new cultural politics, in Butler, Robert; Margolies, Eleonor; Smith, Joe and Tyszczuk, Renata eds. Culture and Climate Change: Recordings. Culture and Climate Change, 1. Cambridge: Shed.

Freely available at:

Smith, J. (2005) Dangerous news: media decision-making about climate change risk, Risk Analysis vol. 25 no. 6, 1471-1482 ISSN 0272-4332/05/0100-1471

Smith, J. (ed.) (2000) The Daily Globe: Environmental Change, the Public and the Media, London, Earthscan 263pp ISBN 1-85383-664-8

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