Visiting Series in Film and Culture: Dr. Aronczyk on, “Spinning Climate Change? Public Relations, Environmentalism, and the Anxieties of Influence”

Cornerstone Screening Room
Monday, April 30, 2018
3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

This event is open to the general public.

In this talk I examine the strategic dimensions of communicating climate change, exploring a range of historical and contemporary efforts by professional influencers to promote, shape and influence what we talk about when we talk about environmental problems. In producing climate change as a public and policy issue, marketers and advocates also seek to reconcile orders of worth among their “stakeholders,” producing value that is recognized across competing perspectives. I also look at how promotional campaigns bring environmental media of land, air and water in line with communications media and technologies. Drawing on archival research, ethnographic fieldwork, and interviews with marketing managers, public relations consultants, media strategists, and advocacy groups, I discuss the cultural repertoires and communicative devices by which professional influencers attempt to make climate change legible to different imagined audiences.

Melissa Aronczyk is Associate Professor in the School of Communication & Information at Rutgers University. She is the author of Branding the Nation: The Global Business of National Identity (2013) and the co-editor of Blowing Up the Brand: Critical Perspectives on Promotional Culture (2010). Recent work has been published in New Media & Society, Public Relations Inquiry, and Critical Studies in Media Communication. Current research, funded by the National Science Foundation, examines the roles of information and influence campaigns on public policy.

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