Home > What Could Possibly Go Right? Interview Series > Episode 5: Dr. Susanne Moser: Hope Requires Uncertainty

July 2, 2020

Dr. Susanne Moser brings her work’s emphasis on climate change adaptation to the question of “What Could Possibly Go Right?” Her insights include:

  • That hope requires uncertainty. “If you’re completely convinced that we’re doomed, or if you’re completely convinced all is going to be fine, you don’t need hope… Only if the future isn’t written can we possibly wish for hope.”
  • How these last few months are encouraging people to open up conversation in areas that previously felt off limits.
  • The feeling of breaking apart and collapse is often a crucial piece in enabling transformation to begin.
  • Considering how to add greater resilience into our systems to reduce vulnerability in the midst of complex, compounding events.
  • The focus on basic needs in Maslow’s hierarchy during crises, especially safety.
  • That if we’re not emotionally safe or politically safe to express our differences, we do not have community safety.

About Dr. Susanne Moser

Dr. Susanne Moser is Director and Principal Researcher of Susanne Moser Research & Consulting, in Hadley, MA, a Research Faculty in the Environmental Studies Department of Antioch University New England and an Affiliated Faculty in the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning at UMass-Amherst. Susi’s work with governmental and non-governmental organizations, researchers and others in the US, Canada, Europe, Australia and beyond focuses on adaptation to climate change, science-policy interactions, effective climate change communication, and psycho-social resilience in the face of the traumatic and transformative challenges associated with climate change. A geographer by training (Ph.D. 1997, Clark University) with broad interdisciplinary expertise, Dr. Moser previously held positions at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, the Union of Concerned Scientists and the Heinz Center. She has served on scientific and advisory boards for Future Earth, the International Social Science Council (now, International Science Council), the International Human Dimensions Program, National Research Council, and other agencies and organizations. She contributed various scientific assessments of the IPCC, and also was a member of the federal advisory committee for the Third US National Climate Assessment and co-lead of its coastal chapter. Susi is the editor of two award-winning edited volumes, one on successful adaptation to climate change; the other on how to communicate climate change. She is a prolific writer, an inspiring speaker, and has been elected as a fellow of the Aldo Leopold Leadership, Kavli Frontiers of Science, Donella Meadows Leadership, Google Science Communication, and Walton Sustainability Solutions Programs.


Download the transcript here.