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Communicate with Hope

Through our Earth Optimism initiative, the Smithsonian Conservation Commons is working to change the way we talk about conservation, climate, and sustainability. Decades into the environmental movement, it can be challenging to reset our thinking and shift the conversation from one that focuses chiefly on urgency and imminent disaster to one that highlights solutions and gives a sense of hope for the future of our shared planet. We’ve gathered a few resources here to help guide you or your organization toward a more positive, equitable, and solutions-centered dialogue.

Telling Stories of Success

The Conservation Commons believes the best way to scale up successes is by sharing solutions. These resources show you how to share your own stories in a way that captivates and inspires an audience to be hopeful for our planet’s future. Share your own stories with #EarthOptimism.

This Reverse the Red conversation shares advice and guidance from conservation communications professionals on how solution-focused messaging can change the world.


Pelecanus invites conservationists, change-makers, thought-leaders, and other movers and shakers for our planet to tell their own story on their podcast. We've co-created a new series with them, The Possibilists, available to listen now.


In this Earth Optimism 2020 Digital Summit workshop, Storytelling in Scaling Conservation Success, learn how to merge communication strategies from scientists and professional communicators.


Talking About Climate

The rising impacts of climate change on people, biodiversity, and the land and seascapes that they survive in can only be mitigated if we collectively amplify solutions that can save our planet. We hope that these resources help you to learn more about how to navigate conversations with your colleagues, friends, and family on climate solutions.

Watch Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist and friend of Earth Optimism, share how to best fight climate change: by communicating hope and solutions.

Watch the TedTalk

If you need help responding to climate denial, a George Mason University professor created this fun game to help give you the communication skills you need to talk effectively about climate change.

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