When we talk about climate change, we must not only think about CO2 emissions. We have to find a holistic and interdisciplinary approach in our narrative and free ourselves from creating a separate narrative for each area. Only if we focus on sustainable industry, energy and agriculture, strengthen and protect biodiversity, rethink our own consumer behaviour, strengthen education worldwide and find a better way of dealing with our environment, we can stop climate change and have a chance to save our world.
This is why we have invited experts* from a wide range of fields to join us in thinking about effective and sustainable climate communication, to look at facts together and to be inspired.
Here is a selection of the speakers of the Climate Story Lab Berlin 2020:
Author (i. a. 'The World Collector' and 'Ice Dew')
Ilija Trojanow, born 1965 in Sofia, fled with his family in 1971 via Yugoslavia and Italy to Germany, where she was granted political asylum. He grew up in Nairobi, studied law, ethnology and accident in Munich and founded the Marino Verlag there. In 1998 Trojanow moved to Mumbai, in 2003 to Cape Town, today he lives in Vienna when he is not travelling. His well-known novels such as 'The World is Big and Salvation Lurks Everywhere', 'The World Collector' and 'Ice Dew' as well as his travel reports such as 'On the Inner Banks of India' are celebrated bestsellers and have been awarded numerous prizes.
Lawyer & vice legal director at "European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights"
Miriam Saage-Maaß is a lawyer and vice legal director at ECCHR, where she coordinates the Business and Human Rights program. She has worked on various cases against corporations, including proceedings against Lidl relating to exploitation of workers in Bangladesh and Pakistan and against companies trading in cotton picked through forced child labor in Uzbekistan. She regularly publishes articles on the legal liability of corporations for human rights violations in the global supply chain and is internationally consulted as an expert in the area of corporate responsibility and human rights. She is a temporary lecturer at the Freie Universität Berlin as well as since 2020 member of the Stiftung Forum Recht’s advisory board.
The Yes Men
The Yes Men are a culture jamming activist duo and network of supporters created by Jacques Servin and Igor Vamos. Through various actions, the Yes Men primarily aim to raise awareness about problematic social and political issues. To date, the duo have produced three films: The Yes Men (2003), The Yes Men Fix the World (2009) and The Yes Men Are Revolting (2014). They call their approach “laughtivism” because, well, it’s funny. And it’s activist: the theory is, we’ll laugh bloodsuckers into oblivion and thus save the world. It doesn’t always work—the world still needs some saving—but, you know, the arc of history bends towards justice, even when it seems to be breaking.
Peng! is an experimental laboratory for new forms of radical protest, with the mission to equip civil society with sharper weapons for its political campaigning, experimenting with subversion, media guerilla and civil disobedience. We learn from the arts, hacking, politics and big business to design provocative and critical interventions and to shift public discourse through tactical media work. We work on various thematic fields ranging from social injustice, anti-militarism, environmental protection to civil and human rights.
Dr. Carolijn Terwindt is an author, activist and multi-media artist living in Berlin and Amsterdam. She is a member of the Peng! Collective where she recently addressed the need for a new economic system in prank calls with the CEOs of major German companies in the action "Klingelstreich beim Kapitalismus". Her latest book "When Protest Becomes Crime. Politics and Law in Liberal Democracies" was published in 2020 with Pluto Press. Until 2019, as Senior Legal Advisor with the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights, she worked closely with factory workers and farmers holding European companies accountable for exploitation in the textile industry in Pakistan and Bangladesh and in cases of pesticides poisoning in India. In addition to writing poetry , Carolijn paints and plays violin. Filmed street violin interventions, in which she explored public intimacy and vulnerability while questioning the practices of privilege that reproduce social inequality were exhibited in Karachi and Goa.
Sheila Hayman has written and directed dozens of documentary films around the world, for the BBC, Channel 4, ARTE, Beijing TV and others, winning a BAFTA, Time Out Documentary Series of the Year and a nomination for Grierson Arts Documentary of the Year. She has been UK Young Journalist of the Year, BAFTA/Fulbright Fellow in Los Angeles, Hodder Headline Lead Title novelist, columnist for The Guardian, Director’s Fellow at the MIT Media Lab and is currently Artist in Residence at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Science Since starting her career in the Science Department of the BBC, a consistent focus of her work has been the relationship between people and their technology. Her 1993 BBC/WGBH film, ‘The Electronic Frontier’ introduced the world to email, the computer in your pocket (eleven years before the iPhone), the death of Main St and DeepFakes, including their political risks. Her current project ‘Senseless’, which has been developed with the Media Lab, is her return to the world of The Electronic Frontier.
Founder "Sustainable Stand Up"
Belina Raffy grew up playing in the forests of the US, Mexico, and Canada, only to somehow end up in a boring, complex, high-pressure job for a major bank in New York. This was when she first turned to improvisation workshops and performing stand up comedy as a way to stay sane. To avoid the full brunt of Y2K compliance, Belina did an MBA in the UK to ‘relax’ and reorient herself. But her real reorientation came when she joined the board of the Applied Improvisation Network and decided to dedicate her life to helping those who are really making the world better.
Today Belina helps climate scientists, social entrepreneurs, activists, internal change agents, humanitarian workers and others:
1. to work together more joyfully and effectively to help humanity. 2. Align their organizations with the principles that help nature thrive so that the organisations can move beyond sustainable to regenerative. 3. to communicate important climate and social issues with a very compassionate form of comedy. Her insights on the universal, loving, and fractal nature of improvisation principles are published in her eBook “Using improv to save the world (and me)”. Belina is a world citizen who giggles a lot because she loves what she does, and she now lives in Berlin.
Lawyer, climate case in Austria
Michaela Krömer, as a lawyer, is intrigued by the answers law provides to existential questions of our time. Pursuing human rights cases in court, I am trying to contribute to finding solutions.
Together with Greenpreace, she has applied on behalf of 8,063 affected people for the cancellation of climate-damaging tax exemptions. Exemptions in the Value Added Tax Act for international flights and the tax exemption for kerosene for domestic flights represent an active promotion of air travel. This is despite the fact that a flight is around 31 times more harmful to the climate than a train journey. Due to this first climate complaint in Austria and due to the individual petitioner, the complaint exemplifies the system failure and the necessity for a system change.
Carel Carlowitz Mohn
Chief editor: klimafakten.de
Carel Carlowitz Mohn is chief editor and project manager of klimafakten.de. The journalist and political scientist worked as Director of Communications Germany for the European Climate Foundation, managed the communications department of DIW Berlin, worked as a spokesperson for the German Association of Consumer Advice Centers and at Transparency International. He is also active as Program Director at Clean Energy Wire CLEW. He is co-initiator of the K3 Congress for Climate, Communication and Society.
Inga von Staden
Strategic lead: Interactive Media Foundation
Inga von Staden is the strategic lead with the Interactive Media Foundation based in Berlin. She also teaches transmedial content development at a range of media- and film schools, speaks at conferences on the converging media landscape and facilitates workshops on world building in Germany, Europe and Israel.
She has worked as an author, creative director and producer in audio-visual media (film, TV, Games and Expanded Reality). Her fascination for the digital transformation and its implications for culture, society and business have made her a builder of bridges and networks. She has initiated and supervised a range of media and technology related projects, coached start-ups, advised private enterprises and public institutions, curated events, defined new job profiles for the digital media industries and has created corresponding educational programs.
Regisseur (u. A. "Taste the Waste")
The director Valentin Thurn became internationally known with "Taste the Waste" and "10 Billion: What's on Your Plate?" Both cinema documentaries were audience hits and won numerous prizes at home and abroad.
He also wrote the books "Die Essensvernichter" and "Harte Kost" to accompany his films and has produced over 40 documentaries for ARD, ZDF and ARTE in the past 20 years.
Furthermore, in 2012 he founded "Foodsharing e. V." and 2014 the "Taste of Heimat e. V." and inspired over 30 cities in the German-speaking region to found a nutrition council.
Centre for Fundamental Rights, Hertie School
Juan Auz is the Co-Founder of Terra Mater and former Executive Director of Fundación Pachamama, two organisations that defend the rights of indigenous peoples in the Ecuadorian Amazon and protect the remaining ecosystems of indigenous territories. After a research stay at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) as an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow, he joined the Centre for Fundamental Rights at the Hertie School as a PhD candidate. He has worked as a political and legal advisor for national and regional indigenous organisations and is a member of CIVICUS, the World Commission on Environmental Law at the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), as well as the European Society of International Law. He received his Bachelor of Laws from Universidad de las Americas in Quito and his Master of Laws in Global Environment and Climate Change Law from the University of Edinburgh.
Dr. Kirsten Brodde
Greenpeace - Head of Coal Phase-out, Climate and Energy
Kirsten Brodde lives and works in Hamburg. She heads the Climate&Energy Campaign of Greenpeace Germany. Previously she led the global detox campaign, which deals with the environmental damage caused by the overheated fashion industry. Her book "Saubere Sachen" (2009) is the go-to work on eco-fashion, in 2010 "Protest!" about modern campaigning was published, 2018 "Einfach anziehend" - the guide for all those who are tired of disposable fashion.
The environmental activist fights against affluent society and the climate crisis. She is Greenpeace's specialist for "mindset change" - the change of mentality in people's minds. Based on the experiences of people in the Corona crisis, she and a small team have tested a new approach and encouraged Germans to tell their personal climate stories to bridge the gap between campaigning and subjective everyday experiences.
Climate Justice and Degrowth Activist
Tonny Nowshin is a researcher, economist and Degrowth and Climate Justice activist. Tonny grew up in Dhaka Bangladesh. Tonny was an activist for social causes from her middle school to early university years. She came to Berlin, Germany to do her second masters in International and Development Economics. During her masters' thesis in 2017, Tonny read the IPCC reports. Being deeply moved by it she became active in the Climate movement.
Tonny has more than 6 year's experience with different international NGO's like BRAC, Action Aid and 350.org. Currently she works with the German NGO Urgewald focusing on fossil finance. Tonny is passionate about the intersection movements specifically of colonialism and the climate crisis.
@t_nowshin on Instagram and Twitter
Fridays for Future
Carla Reemtsma is an activist organizing school strikes with Fridays For Future and other climate protests. After Greta Thunberg’s famous speech at the climate conference in Katowice went viral she organized the first climate strike in her university town Münster in front of the town hall on a rainy Friday in January 2019. Overwhelmed by the amount of people supporting the protests she continued organizing the following worldwide school strikes. For nearly two years now, she has been planning mass protests, attacking coal companies and speaking about climate justice. On the days she’s not protesting, she studies politics and economics and teaches children gymnastics.
Foto by Markus C. Hurek
Foundation Director at Doc Society
Beadie Finzi is one of the founding directors of Doc Society, a non profit film foundation based in London, New York & Amsterdam, supporting the community of independent filmmakers globally.
Having worked in documentary for the past 25 years, Beadie is in heaven in her role at Doc Society. In addition to grant making for artists and journalists working in documentary film and supporting their creative process, we help them develop impact strategies and connect them with allies in civil society. Imagining new models that will support independent filmmaking globally. In addition to Executive Producing a number of films at the foundation, Beadie is also responsible for programmes including Good Pitch & Climate Story Lab. She leads on training in our Impact workshops and developing resources for the field including the Impact Field Guide.
Roos Van De Weerd
As Events & Content Marketing Manager at Patagonia, Roos Van De Weerd is responsible for elevating the brand’s identity across Europe, through film, photography, the written word and events, both live and virtual. In her role, she is been instrumental in bringing to life the Patagonia mission statement: We’re in business to save our home planet, through environmental campaigns such as Save the Blue Heart of Europe and Artifishal, as well as sports activism events including Running Up For Air.
With a lifelong commitment to social and environmental activism, Roos has experience of working with multiple social enterprises, such as Fairphone, and as part of direct action environmental groups, creating campaigns from the bottom up. Roos lives in Amsterdam, where Patagonia’s European headquarters are based. However, as an avid surfer, she is happiest when she is near the ocean, whether playing in it or protecting it.
Professor Stephan Lewandowsky, FAcSS, FAPS
Chair in Cognitive Science, University of Bristol
Professor Stephan Lewandowsky is a cognitive scientist at the University of Bristol.
His research examines people’s memory, decision making, and knowledge structures, with a particular emphasis on how people update their memories if information they believe turn out to be false. This has led him to examine the persistence of misinformation and spread of “fake news” in society, including conspiracy theories. He is particularly interested in the variables that determine whether or not people accept scientific evidence, for example surrounding vaccinations or climate science.
His interest in the cognitive implications of climate change, and the conflict between human cognition and the physics of the global climate, has led him into research in climate science and climate modeling. As a result of his work in climate science he was appointed Visiting Scientist at the CSIRO Oceans & Atmosphere laboratory in Hobart, Tasmania, in August 2017.
Präsident des Indian Youth Climate Network (IYCN)
Raka Sangma, as the President of the Indian Youth Climate Network (IYCN) has been working on empowering youth voices for climate action. He hails from Garo Hills, Meghalaya and is based in New Delhi. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Environmental Sciences and a Master's degree in Disaster Management.
His focus areas are Biodiversity Conservation, Nature based Solutions to CCA & DRR and Indigenous Knowledge.
Social Entrepreneur, Radio Innovator and Climate Activist
Brighton Kaoma is a US-based Zambian Social Entrepreneur, Radio Innovator, Climate Activist, and a graduate of the Masters of Public Administration (MPA) with Environmental Science and Policy (ESP) from Columbia University in New York City. He's a recipient of numerous global awards such as the Queen's Young Leaders Award from Queen Elizabeth II; The World Wide Fund(WWF) Global President's Award; The Global Oustanding Young Persons Award from The Emperor of Japan; and his work in sustainable development has been recognized by both President Barack Obama and Chancellor Angela Merkel. He believes in the power of empowered young people as a force for economic and social transformation. He's the Global Youth Ambassador of the Children's Radio Foundation, and Co-founder of Agents of Change Foundation, both organizations offering leadership and mentorship to over 1,000 young community radio journalists across 6 African countries.
Yurshell Rodríguez is a Colombian environmental engineer, Climate Activist, Amazon rainforest advocate, Plaintiff in the First lawsuit addressing Climate change and Future generation in Latin America and researcher. She is part of the Raizal indigenous Afro-Caribbean ethnic group of the Archipelago of San Andrés and Old Providence Islands, in Colombia. From young she has been engaged in ecosystems protection and conservation participating activities to protect the environment. In 2018 with 25 other young plaintiffs and the NGO DeJusticia they sued the Colombian Government to stop the deforestation rate in the Amazon rainforest and they won the lawsuit. Yurshell Is currently studying her master’s degree in environmental engineering and researching for the IDEA Institute of the National University of Colombia.