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Dr. Kari Norgaard in the Media

Norgaard article photoDr. Kari Norgaard, Associate Professor of Sociology and Environmental Studies at UO, has made ripples across the media this month, twice.

On January 12, Two Rivers Tribune published an article, River Activists and Tribes Prepare For Water Board Public Hearings in Orleans, Arcata and Yreka, where Norgaard is noted for her expertise and research linking the health of the Klamath River to the health of members of the Karuk Tribe. Her work received national media attention and represented the first time a Tribe had successfully illustrated how dams lead to artificially high levels of diabetes and heart disease. Though her original paper on this issue was published 10 years ago, it continues to inform decisions and perspectives on ongoing conversations regarding the Klamath River and the upcoming scoping meetings discussed in the article.

Norgaard’s second substantial appearance in the media this month showed up in The Chronicle Review on January 17, with the debut of her article, Climate Change is a Social Issue. In it, she argues for the need for interdisciplinarity in addressing issues of climate change, in the sense that the natural sciences must move beyond scientific imperialism and learn to engage concepts of the social sciences outside of economics. By the same token, sociologists must learn to more broadly engage the material and symbolic importance of climate change from varying disciplines and perspectives, and be more vocal in getting research findings out into the media.

“Imagination is power, especially in a time of crisis,” she writes. “We need to be able to see the relationships between human actions and their impacts on the earth’s biophysical system — call it an ecological imagination. And we need to be able to see the relationships that make up this environmentally damaging social structure.”

We congratulate Kari Norgaard for her continued success in elevating the conversation on climate change in these recent publications!