Events & Media


"Critical Issues in America: Figuring Sea Level Rise Series"
(Learn more about upcoming events in this series)

Interactive Visioning Symposium
"Exploring Visually Rich Techniques for Conducting and Disseminating
Sea Level Rise Research"

Friday, February 1, 2013
1:00 - 5:00 p.m.
Bren Hall 1414

Keynote addresses by:

Michael Lemonick, Senior Science Journalist, Climate Central
"Communicating The Science and Threat of Sea Level Rise"

Doug Marcy, Coastal Hazards Specialist, NOAA
"Visualizing Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding Impacts"

Panel Members:

James Frew, Professor, Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, UC Santa Barbara

Bruce Caron, Executive Director, New Media Studio, Santa Barbara

Jeremy Weiss, Research Specialist, University of Arizona

Lisa Jevbratt, Professor, Department of Art, UCSB

Marko Peljhan, Professor, Department of Art, UCSB

Invited speakers, together with the audience, will consider how research on the rising oceans is both conducted and disseminated to the public through sophisticated, visually rich, and often interactive techniques of measuring and modeling. With a focus on tools for depicting current and future sea level rise—for example, interactive sites that enable the user to toggle up the sea height across a certain area of the earth’s surface—the day’s speakers will lead and inspire us to take cognizance of how humans are remaking the geography of our planet and how we might creatively intervene in that process in the interest of climate justice.

The practical questions are urgent: How much will the seas rise in any given spot? When will it happen? What impacts will be felt? Who will be obliged to move out of harm's way? What can be done to mitigate or adapt to these circumstances? To begin to address these questions while broaching others, this program will concentrate on issues of mediation and remediation: what does it mean that interactive visioning tools are proliferating in research labs, government agencies such as NOAA and the USGS, and activist organizations? What are the differences among the various tools in terms of information, graphics, and user interface? Where are the interfaces between embodied arts platforms or concepts such as relational aesthetics and the high-tech visioning tools created by engineers? How effective are these tools in communicating climate change science? How might we compare the affective experience of being physically present in a coastal area where the sea level is rising with the experience of reading an extrapolative map or manipulating an online toggle switch?

The first half of the program will be devoted to talks by two invited speakers, each followed by a brief question and answer period. The second half of the program will consist of a panel presentation of six "lightning" or Pechakucha-style talks (20 slides in six minutes and 40 seconds) and a discussion with the audience. The Pechakucha format itself encourages a non-hierarchal, interactive mode of collaborative visioning and learning, limiting the lecture form of a traditional academic conference so that panelists might begin to ask each other questions and build dialogue with audience members.

Co-sponsored by: College of Letters & Science; Carsey-Wolf Center; Bren School of Environmental Science & Management; the Arther N. Rupe Foundation; Institute for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Research; Interdisciplinary Humanities Center; Department of Film and Media Studies; Center for Information Technology and Society.


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