UChicago has officially joined the Midwest Climate Collaborative, a collaborative effort by Midwestern universities to organize the Midwest’s response to climate change, as a founding member. The Midwest Climate Collaborate seeks to combat climate change through a series of projects, including the Midwest-wide Climate Research Agenda, an Asset map and interactive database of Midwestern climate work, the Climate Ambassadors program, the Educator Community of Practice, a Student focused Midwest Climate and Sustainability Conference, and Climate Commitments for all Midwestern universities to adhere to. The Midwest-wide Climate Research Agenda will utilize a multi-stage process of literature and data review, key stakeholder interviews and surveys, and community engagement to identify and define immediate and long-term climate priorities for the Midwest. The asset map and interactive database of Midwestern climate work, a project in collaboration with Second Nature and Climate Action Systems, will exist to help external and internal audiences easily access, contribute to, and use existing climate action information. The Climate Ambassadors program will provide training in science communication and community engagement to generate and disseminate climate change information and act as a liaison between the scientific community and other influential thought leaders. The Educator Community of Practice is a structure for a Midwestern educator community of practice that initially focuses on providing a space to more fully develop and continue conversations begun in the Think Tank series. Another project, the student focused Midwest Climate and Sustainability Conference, will allow students across the Midwest to discuss and develop climate action in an annual conference. To consolidate the overarching idea among the projects, the MCS is working to support and compile ambitious, science-informed mitigation and adaptation targets currently being developed and adopted by Midwestern institutions across sectors.
The official launch of the Collaborative will be marked by the 2022 Midwest Climate Summit, which will serve to highlight the critical role of the Midwest in mitigating and adapting to climate change. Keynote speakers for this event will include White House National Climate Advisor, Gina McCarthy, and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs, Department of Energy (DOE), Aimee Witteman. There will also be a Cross-sector panel of Midwest Climate Collaborative founding member organizations, including the University of Chicago. Sign up for the summit here.
Following the main Summit event, please join the Collaborative for a workshop that will focus on the MCC’s work to create a Midwest Climate Research Agenda. One of the goals of the Midwest Climate Collaborative is to leverage the power of science and research to accelerate climate work in the Midwest, and the Midwest Climate Research Agenda is central to that goal. The Agenda aims to synthesize what is already known about climate impacts and solutions in the Midwest; to develop strategies that can inform and accelerate climate mitigation and adaptation in the Midwest during the next 10 years; and to build a network of climate researchers and practitioners across the Midwest to facilitate research collaboration and research translation. The workshop will include:
- Details on Midwest Climate Research Agenda
- Overview of research knowledge synthesis
- How MCC member organizations, practitioners, students, and postdocs can get involved
- Q & A Session
Who should attend: Researchers, practitioners, industry partners, students, and others who are interested in shaping the questions that the MCC will work together to answer.