Julia Kumari Drapkin, KVNF Public Radio & Localore, Colorado
August 23, 2012  |  Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 11.00 am-12.00 pm, 233-305E
About this Lecture
Directly engaging local communities about their climate change experiences has never been more important. As weather and climate become more unpredictable, these experiences provide a baseline for community decisions, developing adaptation strategies, and planning for the future. Typically, climate change is documented in a top-down fashion: a scientist has a question, makes observations, and publishes a study; in the best case scenario, a journalist reports on the results; if there’s time, a local anecdote is sought to put the results in a familiar context. iSeeChange, a public media project funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, reports local environmental change in reverse and turns community questions and conversations with scientists into reported stories that promote opportunities to learn about climate change's affects on the environment and daily life.
iSeeChange engages residents of the North Fork Valley region of western Colorado in a multiplatform conversation with scientists about how they perceive their environment is changing through the course of a year – season to season. By bringing together public radio, a mobile reporting and cellular engagement strategy, and a custom crowdsourcing multimedia platform, iSeeChange provides a central access point to collect observations (texts, photographs, voice recordings, and video), organize conversations and interviews with scientists, and report stories online and on air. In this way, iSeeChange is building a dynamic crowdsourced reservoir of information that can increase awareness of environmental problems and potentially disseminate useful information about climate change and successful adaptation strategies. Ultimately, by understanding the community’s information needs in a localized question-driven context, the iSeeChange platform presents opportunities for the science community to better understand the value of information and develop better ways to tailor information for communities to use in the future.
About Julia Kumari Drapkin
Julia Kumari Drapkin is the lead producer for iSeeChange at KVNF, a public media experiment in community environmental science reporting funded by Localore, the Association for Independents in Radio, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Together with the KVNF staff, Julia is producing a multimedia dialogue between citizens and scientists and hopes to help listeners both understand their own experiences with the weather, and take pride in their local landscape and culture. Julia is an experienced science radio, television, and multimedia reporter and producer. She has worked as a correspondent and multimedia producer for PRI's The World, Global Post, CBS, the St. Petersburg Times, and the Associated Press, among others. Drapkin earned in MA in journalism from Columbia University, with a concentration in new media and documentary film.