public awareness

Climate Change Turns Personal: Why Brands Must Adapt

Until recently, climate change remained an abstract concept to most Americans — something that may have long-term consequences for the planet, but moving too slowly be a significant concern in their daily lives.

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Uncharted Waters: Reframing Climate Change around Water

Einstein is credited with saying that “everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.” Such words have renewed meaning when it comes to messaging about climate change as everything about it seems complex – its cause, its impact, and the challenges that humans face to address it.

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Pandas, Smart Grids and the Power of Design Thinking to Change Behaviors

While a number of leading technology companies (IBM, Cisco, HP) have launched impressive Smart Grid initiatives, the broader public still doesn't really understand why the "Smart Grid" is so important to our nation's energy future. IBM has been somewhat successful in explaining the concept via its Smarter Planet initiative, but the concept is - I'm sorry - still a bit too wonkish for most people. (It's a bit like trying to explain Quantitative Easing to investors concerned about their portfolios - they know the concept is important, but their eyes glaze over as soon as you start mentioning the finer points of monetary policy.) So what would it take for the concept Smart Grid to really take off in the public mainstream?

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Earth Day and the Polling of America, 2010: Me First, Planet Later

It's April. The flowers are bursting with color, trees are coming back to life, people are smiling, walking a bit more jauntily; hope abounds. It can mean only one thing: Baseball season has begun.

That, and the latest crop of pre-Earth Day surveys has invaded my in-box.

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Introducing … the Green Confidence Index

Today marks the launch of a new monthly index, the Green Confidence Index, aimed at tracking Americans' attitudes about and confidence in their leaders and institutions, nationally and locally, on the subject of environmental responsibility, as well as in their own understanding of issues and their willingness to make green purchasing choices. It is the first comprehensive monthly tracking of consumers' green attitudes and purchasing.

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How to Talk About [Whatever It's Called]

Do people care about the climate?

It's an open question these days, and opinion polls offer little help. Some show that climate ranks fairly low among public concerns, while others indicate a high level of concern among the populace. And in the run-up to the Copenhagen climate summit, now a mere six weeks away, those opinions count for something, particularly in the United States, where lawmakers are looking to be swayed one way or another.

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Lend a Hand

A viral video focused on a woman's boobs jiggling as she walks through a crowd around a pool has been making headlines, not because it's crude or exploitative, but rather because it's crude and exploitative for a good cause.


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Why Doesn't Green = Better?

So many green products, so little progress. At least, that's how it seems most days. As we report in — and have for the past decade — the progress is undeniable: Companies are embracing green practices as never before, and doing so at a deeper, more holistic level. It's no longer just about "greening up." It's about doing better.

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Will Radical Transparency Save the Earth?

by: Joel Makower

There's a growing school of thought that unfettered information about the environmental impacts of our world will smoke out the bad guys and help the good guys win.

I wish it were that simple.

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Earth Day, Green Marketing, and the Polling of America, 2009

Here we go again. In the run-up to yet another Earth Day, here is my third annual take on the bounty of polling data on consumer environmental attitudes that seems to hit my in-box this time each year. (See here for the 2007 and 2008 installments.) This year is no different. I've counted more than a dozen different surveys, market segmentations, and opinion polls since Barack Obama became president. By my estimation, that's a record.

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