Inside the Climate Converter: How technology can help inspire action

Lightning Talk

Thursday, April 02, 2020: 11:00am - 12:30pm -

Chris White, DOTDOT, USA

When the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa (Te Papa) started developing its new long-term Te Taiao Nature exhibition they knew they had to talk about the harmful impact of climate change in a way that will leave visitors feeling inspired to take action. From research they knew that climate change is the global issue their audience cares most about, but in testing, target audiences said that they felt overloaded, scared, and stuck when it came to thinking about climate change.

Based on this user research Te Papa defined clear and specific aims for the Climate Converter experience. The core goal was to create an experience that left visitors feeling motivated to take action together to create a carbon-zero New Zealand. The installation needed to take up a maximum floor space of approximately 5 metres by 8 metres and function without host/docent guidance.

This lightning talk will map the iterative journey of creative, technical and scientific collaboration to produce an interactive and immersive room to confront this polarizing subject matter. How did we approach creating “Climate Converter”? How can we empower visitors to critically engage with the issues? And what have we learned from the collaboration between Experience Designers, Creative Technologists, Museum Professionals and Scientists?

After attending this session participants will have an understanding of the processes involved in producing ambitious interactive digital projects. We hope that by reflecting and sharing lessons learned, museum professionals, creative technologists, educators, and curators, will be encouraged to think about ways to use technology to create impact towards a carbon-neutral future.

Bibliography:
Bator, R.J., & Cialdini, R.B. (2000). "The application of persuasion theory to the development of effective pro-environmental public service announcements”, Journal of Social Issues

Cialdini, R. (2003) “Crafting Normative Messages to Protect the Environment”, American Psychological Society

Gates, B. (2018) “Climate change and the 75% problem”.
https://www.gatesnotes.com/Energy/My-plan-for-fighting-climate-change

Royal Society (2016).“Transition to a low-carbon economy for New Zealand”, https://royalsociety.org.nz/assets/Uploads/Report-Transition-to-Low-Carbon-Economy-for-NZ.pdf

Salen, K. (2012). “How games intersect learning is an ‘incredibly fun problem”, http://www.genconnect.com/lifestyle/how-games-intersect-learning-is-an-incredibly-fun-problem-video/

Stoian, M. (2018). “Nobody is coming to save us from climate change”, https://thenib.com/nobody-is-coming-to-save-us-from-climate-change