Academic Year 2015-2016

On Friday June 3, 2016, Rutgers University hosted a workshop for public health professionals  to  learn about how a changing climate may affect public health in New Jersey and about strategies to better prepare New Jersey’s public health practitioners and professionals to address these impacts.  The workshop was planned planned by the New Jersey Climate Change and Public Health Working Group under the umbrella of the  New Jersey Climate Adaptation Alliance which is facilitated by Rutgers University.  


View the past event page in full here

On Wednesday May 4, 2016 Rutgers Climate Institute teamed up with Rutgers Energy Institute to host Energy and Climate: One Day Two Great Events. The morning program was the Eleventh Annual Rutgers Energy Institute Symposium and the Afternoon Program was Climate Change Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability: From the IPCC to New Jersey Practitioners.  Dr. Hoesung Lee, who received his Ph.D. in Economics from Rutgers University and is Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and Sir Robert Watson, a former IPCC Chair were featured speakers during both the morning and afternoon program.  Presentations from the event can be found below.


On Thursday April 21, 2016 Rutgers Climate Institute sponsored "Strategies for Effective Science Communication: A Roundtable Discussion" featuring Dr. Emmanuel Vincent, Center for Climate Communication, University of California - Merced  and Rutgers professors Lauren Feldman (Journalism and Media Studies) and Rachael Shwom (Human Ecology) for a discussion moderated by Professor Benjamin Lintner (Environmental Sciences). Communicating about scientific issues like climate change can be difficult even for experts as scientists or students of science face the challenge of conveying complex ideas or topics while avoiding unfamiliar language and terminology.  This roundtable event was designed so that students and faculty could gain insights into science communication from these experts. Dr. Vincent described his work with the Climate Feedback initiative in which he organizes scientists to review influential climate media articles for accuracy by annotating them in a web-browser so they can be peer-reviewed on-line in a timely manner (within a news cycle).



Dr. Vincent noted, Climate Feedback's approach "brings scientists into the conversation in a way they are comfortable with." It helps readers, especially non-scientists, understand what scientists think and to identify the sources of information they can trust, while providing authors and editors with detailed feedback to encourage more accurate reporting.  Among the topics discussed, was that a goal of science is to be objective, without bias; i.e., that it is a systematic evidence-based way to learn about the natural world through the pursuit of facts.  Students felt it was important for the public to understand how scientists generate data through systematic evaluation and thus they are not presenting random facts; science is incremental and uses a peer review process.  Audience participants felt it was important for scientists to talk more about the scientific process and peer review so that the public understands the  work of scientists is subject to the scrutiny of experts in their field and progresses through a deliberative process. Co-sponsors of this event included the Rutgers Department of Environmental Sciences,  Institute of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, Cook Campus Dean, and the Environmental Sciences Graduate Student Association.  


In addition, RCI co-sponsored Dr. Vincent 's talk  "Can Scientists Peer Review Climate Change Media Coverage" on April 22, 2016  in the Department of Environmental Sciences weekly seminar.  


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On Friday November 20, 2015 Rutgers Climate Institute hosted a one-day symposium to stimulate interaction and collaboration among the community of natural and social science researchers and university students from institutions in the greater NJ, NY and Philadelphia region interested in climate change. The symposium theme was Climate Change and Polar Regions: Natural and Social System Implications.

Read more: Regional Climate Symposium at Rutgers University. Symposium Theme: Climate Change and Polar...

Andrew Revkin, The New York Times and Pace University

Photo: Andrew Revkin.

On Thursday November 12, 2015 at Trayes Hall in the Douglass Student Center, New Brunswick, NJ,award-winning journalist Andrew Revkin spoke on the age of the anthropocene to a body of students, faculty, staff and members of the public.

Revkin noted that addressing climate change requires a mix of urgency and patience and emphasized the need for sustained engagement: "we can have a good path in a toubled time." He relayed human implications from his reporting about resource exploitation and climate change and challenged the audience to be sensitive to the needs of those in the developing world for example, those that lack electricity.   Among his strategies for sustained engagement are response diversity, innovation, connectedness and communication, teaching, transparency, reflection, and rejoicing in remembering what the planet is about, and repeating the resolve to address environmental problems.

Along with the Rutgers Climate Institute, the evening lecture was sponsored by G. H. Cook Campus Dean, Rutgers Department of Human Ecology, Rutgers Department of Journalism and Media Studies, Rutgers Energy Institute, Environmental Science and Engineering Club, Meteorology Club, Naturalists Club, Oceanography Club, Rutgers Fossil Fuel Divest, Students for Environmental Awareness.



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  Event flyer pdf here (2.63 MB).

 Read more about Andrew Revkin's visit to Rutgers here.