Articles Comments

Dickinson to Durban » Climate Change » Interviews and Life Learning

Interviews and Life Learning

Esther Babson

Dani and Claire at the CAN Press Briefing

After almost a week of being in the same building as negotiations and interviewing delegates I finally attempted to sit in on a planery meeting! Can you believe it? How is it possible that I’ve talked with these incredible delegates and still haven’t even seen a meeting?! Even worse because the meeting was delayed I ended up having to leave before it even started to make it to an interview! Hopefully I’ll eventually find the time to sit in and listen to the talks. During an interview with Saleemul Huq yesterday, he mentioned how in order to really follow the meetings you have to try and attend 3 in a row! But even if they end up being too technical for my understanding, just to be able to say I’ve been there is incentive enough.

One incredibly helpful meeting I’ve been attending every day are the Climate Action Network(CAN) press briefings. The briefings are essentially a panel of 3 representatives of different groups who give their perspectives on the negotiations thus far. Since I’ve been so busy with going to side events, interviews and of course blogging I haven’t been able to follow the negotiations at all! The meetings are really informative though have to be taken with a grain of salt. The main groups that I’ve seen present are Greenpeace International, Oxfam, Christian Aid and CAN from different countries. Still, the information they give about their opinions on the negotiations is really helpful in understanding how people perceive the issues. Not only that but the different informational pamphlets such as the Earth Negotiations Bulletin written by the International Institute for Sustainable Development(IISD).

As the week has been progressing interviews have become much more informative! What has really made them great has been the increased joint interviews. Now that I’m pretty comfortable with doing interviews on my own, having another person to enhance the conversation has been so cool. By having another person ask his or her own questions, you get more then just information about your research project. It can be tempting to just think of the negotiators and NGO representatives in a very 1-dimensional way. By going to one side event they spoke at, we only get to see one aspect of their many interests. The interviews I’ve been a part of have been more then just an interview on the negotiations, they’ve been real intellectual discussions!

So far the conversations that have been more casual have turned out to be the best. Not only does it allow the interviewee feel more relaxed but it also relaxes you as the interviewer because the negotiator becomes more then just an incredibly smart and well-informed person; they become a real person who at the end of the day wants the same thing as us all, for this incredible island home we call Earth to survive now and into the future.

Written by

Filed under: Climate Change · Tags: , , , ,

2 Responses to "Interviews and Life Learning"

  1. Maggie Rees says:

    I really like the picture you used in your post. The Climate Action International Press Briefings are always very insightful in what is going on in the negotiations. I’ve been to the briefings everyday this week and it is my favority way to stay updated on the negotiations. You can watch them on a Webcast too at their website.

Leave a Reply