Jennie Stephens: Diversifying Power: Why We Need Antiracist, Feminist Leadership on Climate and Energy
The climate crisis is a crisis of leadership. For too long too many leaders have prioritized corporate profits over the public good, exacerbating climate vulnerabilities while reinforcing economic and racial injustice. Transformation to a just, sustainable renewable-based society requires leaders who connect social justice and antiracist, feminist principles to climate and energy. During the Trump era, connections among white supremacy; environmental destruction; and fossil fuel dependence have become more conspicuous. The inadequate and ineffective male-dominated framing of climate change as a narrow, isolated, discrete problem to be "solved" by technical solutions has inhibited investments in social change and social innovations. But inspiring leaders who are connecting climate and energy with job creation and economic justice, health and nutrition, housing and transportation, are advancing exciting transformative change. Bold diverse leaders are resisting the "the polluter elite" to restructure society by catalyzing a shift to a just, sustainable, regenerative, and healthy future.
Jennie C. Stephens is Director of Northeastern University's School of Public Policy & Urban Affairs, Dean's Professor of Sustainability Science & Policy, and Director for Strategic Research Collaborations at the Global Resilience Institute. She is an internationally-recognized expert on renewable transformation, energy justice, climate resilience, and gender in energy innovation. Trained at Harvard and Caltech, she is a transdisciplinary academic with two decades of experience linking environmental science and technology with policy and social change.
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