Crowdsourcing Sustainability

Systems change, Multisolving, and the power to change direction with Dr. Elizabeth Sawin

September 10, 2021 Ryan Hagen Season 1 Episode 15
Crowdsourcing Sustainability
Systems change, Multisolving, and the power to change direction with Dr. Elizabeth Sawin
Show Notes

In this interview with Dr. Elizabeth Sawin, we talk about systems change, Climate Interactive's influence on UN climate conference negotiations, multisolving, the importance of building relationships and networks, the emissions gap, cultural narratives & paradigms, and lots of advice for folks on their climate journeys!

Beth is the Co-founder and co-director at Climate Interactive which is a non profit think tank that specializes in making science-based tools to help people understand what actions are best for addressing the biggest challenges we face - like the climate crisis. Before Climate Interactive, Beth was a Program Director at the Sustainability Institute where she worked at the intersection of system dynamics and sustainability for 13 years.

0:00 Intro.
1:30 Beth's climate journey.
6:40 How much the climate space has changed over the decades.
11:00 What Climate Interactive is, how it got started, and their pivotal role at the UN climate conferences.
15:40 What it's like to be at/play a crucial role at COP, influencing government leaders.
23:15 How framing, short-term thinking, & not seeing the full picture has held back action.
28:00 Multisolving, solidarity, and core benefits vs. co-benefits.
34:00 Climate movement needs a strategy around funding a broad, diverse, and interconnected movement - this starts with building relationships.
38:45 Advice on how to accelerate multisolving where you live and work.
43:40 What the emissions gap is and how to start closing it faster. And why Beth is dedicating the rest of her career to strengthening relationships and building networks.
52:40 Systems thinking: climate change is a symptom of a giant misunderstanding about who we are and what we're a part of. Partnership vs. domination paradigms.
57:45 Society's narrative & human nature. Who is "we"?
1:02:00 Advice for people who are just starting their climate journeys.
1:05:35 Advice on how to find a mentor.
1:08:40 How Beth takes care of herself and where she finds strength.
1:12:10 Thoughts on building networks and strengthening relationships.
1:17:10 Defining systems change, systems dynamics, and why they matter.
1:20:40 Beth's book recommendation and final message to listeners.
 (every investment decision is a moment of opportunity).

Follow Beth, Climate Interactive, and check out the resources she mentioned here:
- Follow Beth on Twitter 
- Website & ENROADS
- Beth's Multisolving Ted Talk
- Climate Interactive's Systems Thinking training
- Thinking in Systems by Donella Meadows
- Leverage Points: Places to Intervene in a System
- Climate puppet show

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And a huge thank you to Diego Rentsch for editing as always!!

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