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Renée Lertzman

speaker location icon San Francisco Bay Area, U.S.

Climate, Energy and Environmental Psychologist

Engagement Strategist

Psychological Researcher in the field of Social Sciences

Dr. Renée Lertzman is an internationally recognized psychological researcher and thought-leader, working to make an impact on climate change with tools that organizations can use to engage, mobilize and connect with diverse populations. By blending scientific approaches into strategies that will be impactful on the environmental challenges, Renée shows that combining the disciplines of psychology with environmental science can aid in the path of big changes.

A native of Northern California, Renée has had more than 20 years of experience as a pioneer bridging psychological research and sustainability. She integrates behavioural, social and innovative design sciences to create a dynamic approach to social change. She holds a Master’s degree in Environmental Communications from the University of North Carolina and a PhD from the Cardiff School of Social Sciences at Cardiff University, UK.

Her distinguished reputation has led her to regularly teach, present and produce research for numerous institutions including World Wildlife Fund, the White House Social and Behavioural Sciences Team (SBST), National Center for Atmospheric Research, NOAA, and universities such as Columbia University, Portland State University, Royal Roads University, Lanzhou University, Oxford University’s UK Energy Research Centre, the University College London’s Climate Sciences Communications Policy Commission and Radboud University.

Renée is also an author and published journalist, writing about how the intersections of psychology, environment and culture illustrate the culture of change. Her pieces have been featured in publications including The Sun Magazine, Sierra, Pacific Standard, Orion Magazine, The Ecologist, Climate Access, DeSmog Blog, Sustainable Brands, and Sightline. She has been featured in The Guardian, The New York Times, Bloomberg CityLab, The Washington Post, the Hollywood Reporter, Vice, Huffington Post, The Correspondent (NL), Cambridge TV (UK), Climate One at the Commonwealth Club, Oregon Public Radio, National Public Radio, the TED Radio Hour and the BBC. Her book, Environmental Melancholia, (Routledge) was published in 2015.

Renée produces and teaches university courses for a range of institutions. She developed and taught the course ‘Psychology of Environmental Education and Communications’ for a Master’s program at Royal Roads University (2011-2016) and taught and supervised graduate students during this. Since 2001, she has been engaged with university courses as she designed and taught courses on the psychology of climate change and the environment. She is dedicated to helping her clients apply innovative insights to encourage more participation and engagement with the ecological challenges society is faced with. She applies an understanding of the audience, communities and stakeholders that will, in return, leverage social influences. By doing so, the process will address how to educate, inform and raise awareness efficiently and skilfully and support communities to integrate information and awareness about human impacts on the ecosystem. She resides north of San Francisco.


Environmental Melancholia: Psychoanalytic Dimensions of Engagement

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