F&ES 743b / 2019-2020

Strategic Environmental Communication

Credits: 3

Spring 2020: M,W, 1:00-2:20, Sage 32


Increasing economic prosperity and improving the lives of an estimated ten billion people while maintaining and restoring the life-support systems of the planet is the ultimate challenge of the twenty-first century, often labeled “sustainability.” Organizations of all kinds will play important roles in this historic transition and must operate and succeed in ever-more complex and often contested social, cultural, political, and natural environments. Strategic communication is a powerful means of achieving an organization’s mission, especially when informed by insights into human behavior and social systems. By the end of this course, students are able to develop communication strategies and apply insights from the social and behavioral sciences to improve the effectiveness of their communication campaigns. 

Application Process:
This is a seminar course with a strong emphasis on active participation and discussion, so the enrollment is limited to 12 students.
Please note that this is a hands-on course, in which you will be developing a communication plan for an actual organization, as described below. Please do not apply if you will be unable to do this.
Choose an organization or project for whom you will create a communication plan during the course. The organization could be your own company, a non-profit that you work with, or a center or program at Yale or within the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (e.g., CBEY, Yale Climate Connections, EFFY, etc.). The organization must be facing some issue, opportunity, or obstacle related to their mission – your job is to develop a strategic communication plan to help the organization address this situation throughout the course.
To apply, please provide short answers to the following questions and email your responses + your current resume/CV to lisa.fernandez@yale.eduno later than 5:00 pm EST on Friday, December 13th. You will be notified by C.O.B. December 20th.

  1. Why are you interested in taking this class?


  1. What organization and/or project are you planning to develop a communication plan for?


  1. Do you have an existing relationship with that organization and/or project? If so, what is it? Have you asked if they would support your project (not necessary, but helpful)?


  1. When do you expect to graduate?

Enrollment limited to twelve.