Professor studies evolution of climate change activism


Climate change is a topic that is debated, doubted and covered by news outlets across the world. Luis Hestres, in the Department of Communication at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), is researching the evolution of climate change activism and how advocacy groups use digital platforms to mobilize.

Hestres and Jill Hopke, assistant professor at DePaul University, co-authored “Internet-Enabled Activism and Climate Change,” which was recently published in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia on Climate Change Communication. In the article, the collaborators describe how the landscape for climate change advocacy has transformed due to technology.

“In some cases, digital communication technologies have simply made the collective action process faster and more cost-effective for organizations,” said Hestres. “Groups are using digital platforms to self-organize and expand their reach.”

Hestres said digital communication technologies make it easier for members to connect remotely and reduces the role for traditional methods of collective action, like face-to-face meetings.

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