UI Hosts Expert On Media Coverage of Climate Change

Tuesday, March 18 2014

MOSCOW, Idaho – Maxwell T. Boykoff, who researches and writes about the cultural politics of climate change, will speak Tuesday, March 25, at the University of Idaho. His free public talk, “Who speaks for the climate?” will begin at 7 p.m. in the courtroom of the College of Law, 711 S. Rayburn Dr. in Moscow.

Boykoff is an assistant professor in the Center for Science and Technology Policy at the University of Colorado-Boulder. He is the author of “Who Speaks for the Climate? Making Sense of Media Reporting on Climate Change” published in 2011 by Oxford University Press. His research interests include climate adaptation, science-policy interactions, and political economy and the environment.

“Professor Boykoff will address the ways in which the news media contribute to public understanding – and misunderstanding – of climate issues,” said Kenton Bird, director of the school of journalism and mass media, one of the program’s sponsors. “His research is especially relevant to the University of Idaho’s growing expertise in the effects of climate change on the Pacific Northwest.”

Boykoff’s talk will be followed by a panel discussion featuring four UI faculty members: Juliet Carlisle, department of political science; Barbara Cosens, College of Law; John Abatzoglou, department of geography, and Russell Meeuf, school of journalism and mass media.

While on campus, Boykoff will speak to classes related to climate change and environmental policy and meet with faculty and graduate students. His visit is supported by the College of Science, College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences, College of Law, school of journalism and mass media, Martin School, department of history, department of geography and the McClure Center for Public Policy for Research.

Boykoff earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from The Ohio State University and a doctoral degree in environmental studies from the University of California-Santa Cruz. His research is motivated by his interest in how climate science and policy find meaning in people’s everyday lives, as well as how this relationship influences decisions about science policy.

The book, “Who Speaks for the Climate? Making Sense of Media Reporting on Climate Change,” is designed to help students, academic researchers and interested citizens better understand of media reporting on climate change. The title question comes from the journalistic norm of seeking multiple viewpoints on matters of public concern, leading Boykoff to ask “who speaks for climate?” in the public policy arena.

At the University of Colorado, Boykoff teaches in the environmental studies program and is adjunct faculty in the geography department. In addition, he is a senior visiting research associate in the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University in England.


Contact: Kenton Bird, School of Journalism and Mass Media, (208) 885-4947(208) 885-4947, kbird@uidaho.edu

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