we’d love you to add your thoughts. The survey is here. We are going to make a booklet for the launch on Friday (but don’t worry, the conversation goes on after that!)
Why do people get involved in (climate) activism? And how?
The standard answer would be because people care. We know from the evidence we’ve seen so far that climate change is a big problem facing humanity and care enough to want to ‘do something’ about it.
Who stays involved and why?
I think that those who stay involved lie usually either have time and dedication or good time management and dedication. Other factors that come into play are how attached activists become to the ‘activist community’ and how much they feel they belong. It can be cliquey.
Why do people stop being involved? Give as many reasons as you like!
This follows on from the factors influencing continued involvement. One reason for lack of involvement would be lack of time or bad time management skills. Then again other reasons could be disillusionment, not necessarily with the cause but with the techniques used.
Activism can be as dogmatic as religion I’ve found. Cherry picking evidence to suit a cause however worthy (not referring to climate activism, but to anti-GM activism now) is disillusioning as is not a sign of good logic.
Other reasons that people stop being involved could relate to cliquishness; this is a natural outcome if people work together for prolonged period on emotionally-charged issues, however for those who are not actively involved it can be off-putting as it would make them feel like an outsider even though they could have the same amount of dedication, but lack the time for legitimate reasons.
If you are no longer involved, what would it take for YOU to get involved again?
Time is a factor. Also, being able to identify with more tangible and achievable goals. When I got involved in climate activism, it was all to do with direct action. I think having the ability to organise direct action is important for the movement as a whole, but I’d like to expend my energy and skills now in something like lobbying or education for behaviour change.
What are the barriers to becoming involved (or re-involved)?
Making the time. As with anyone who wants to ‘do something’ I care about more than one issue in this twisted world of ours. So, deciding what I want to do vis-a-vis each and balancing that with work and social life is the barrier I see now.
Anything else you’d like to say