Help John Grant Edit His New Book “Co-Opportunity” [Part 1]

Help John Grant Edit His New Book “Co-Opportunity” [Part 1]
John Grant
  • 17 august 2009

This is an extract from the draft John Grant’s new book Co-opportunity, contracted for publication with John Wiley & Sons Limited, January 2010. This extract section 1 of the book – A Climate for Change.

After all the hype and much vaunted public concern about Climate Change, very little seems to be happening. The main reason for that (I’ve found, for instance doing qualitative research for the UK government) is that it is very much a low level concern. On the one hand if you ask people if they are concerned about climate change 70-80% say yes. But ask them what their key worries or priorities are and a very different picture emerges. Climate change (along with most other environmental and global crises) comes very low on the list.

Failure of the Communication Approach

If you look at the climate science (and water, food, oil, poverty, biodiversity…) people absolutely should be very concerned. These are threats to the survival of human civilization. And the indications are that they will bite hard within a decade or two. We have very little time left to prepare. And part of this preparation must mean a seismic shift in public awareness, concern and mobilization.

In this section I explore the failure of the communication approach to bringing this shift about. And conclude that its simply the wrong approach. What’s needed is a mass collective ‘workshoppping’ of the issue more akin to the Obama election campaign, Transition Towns and many other examples covered in this section. Fundamentally it’s about calling people up as citizens. From that position they can start to take the information in and choose ways forward together. Anything less simply bounces ooff people, being filtered through news media and a current paradigm which sees them as “tax hikes” or “attacks on freedom”.

I guess this section will be of most interest to those whose job it is in some senses to market sustainability to the general public; in governments, NGOs and forward think corporates. But it’s also pretty much where I think we have got to with engagement marketing, community, social media and so on – plus could be of interest to those who just want to know the latest on climate change and so on (summary – it is MUCH worse than we thought, even a few years ago).

How This Works

My publisher, Wiley, has been quite broad-minded in allowing me to share the near completed draft in this public way, for free. I’d ask you to please be respectful of that and for instance don’t circulate all or part of the manuscript. Also by Wiley’s request only one section of the book with be available for download at any one time. If you or a colleague has missed an earlier section, you can always email me at

Please do post thoughts, ideas, comments and insights in the comments section. I will be checking into these, and using them to help me complete the manuscript. I’ll also be giving free signed books to the most helpful commenters and acknowledging all those that are helpful in the acknowledgements section of the final book.

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John Grant’s Blog: Greenormal


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