Speaker Britt Wray

Biography

Science storyteller Britt Wray is the author of the book Rise of the Necrofauna: The Science, Ethics and Risks of De-Extinction, a contributing host on the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation)’s national science TV show The Nature of Things, is co-host of the BBC podcast Tomorrow’s World and has been a guest host of CBC Quirks and Quarks. Over the last decade, Wray has produced narrative science documentaries for outlets such as BBC Radio 4, CBC Radio 1, WNYC’s Studio 360, and Love and Radio. Britt holds degrees in biology and media arts as well as a PhD in Science Communication (with a focus on synthetic biology) from the University of Copenhagen. She is now redirecting her research and practice towards the psychological impacts of climate change and the extinction crisis. Britt is a 2019 TED Resident, a TED speaker, and has been a Visiting Scholar at NYU’s Arthur L Carter Institute for Journalism.

Talk

How climate change messes with our minds --- and what design can do about it

In this keynote talk, Britt Wray will explore how climate change negatively impacts our psychology and mental health in order to open-up ideas about what design can do to fight these effects. As natural disasters increase, temperatures rise, and increasing numbers of climate migrants are made, psychologists and epidemiologists measure the human toll this takes in terms of psychological, social and spiritual wellbeing. But trends are also noticed for increased climate-linked anxiety, depression, and ecological grief in areas where people are not yet directly impacted by climate disasters, making this a relevant discussion for all. Dr. Wray argues that design has a crucial role to play in helping people build strong communities and foster personal resilience - two key ingredients for psychological, social and spiritual wellbeing - as climate change roars on.

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