Salish Sea Institute Presents: Strategies for Countering Climate Doomism

The Unexpected Value of Evidence-Based Hope

Book cover of Hope Matters: Why Changing the Way We Thing Is Critical to Solving the Environmental Crisis.

Event Details




Online: Zoom

In-Person at WWU:
Academic Instructional Center West, Room 204



Brought to you by:

Salish Sea Institute, Institute for Energy Studies, College of the Environment, The Foundation for WWU & Alumni


WWU’s Salish Sea Institute is excited to bring Elin Kelsey as the next speaker in the Institute for Energy Studies speaker series. This special event is hosted by the Salish Sea Institute in collaboration with Institute for Energy Studies and College of Environment.

Our feelings about the state of the planet are based on both the very real and urgent crises we face and on our thoughts, beliefs, and mindsets. Widespread climate doomism is fueling a global mental health crisis and hampering our capacity to engage in meaningful climate actions. Join us for a discussion of why and how to hope from an evidence-based stance.


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Elin Kelsey is a light-skinned woman. She has a broad, warm smile and short black hair. She wears a multi-strand bead necklace and grey tunic.

Elin Kelsey, PhD, Speaker

Elin Kelsey, PhD, is a leading spokesperson, scholar and educator in the area of evidence-based hope. Elin’s work focuses on the reciprocal relationship between humans and the rest of nature, particularly in relation to the emotional implications of the narrative of environmental doom and gloom on children and adults. Her influence can be seen in the hopeful, solutions-focus of her clients including the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and other powerful institutions where she has served as a visiting fellow including the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society, and the Rockefeller Foundation. Passionate about bringing science-based stories of hope and multi-species resilience to the public, Kelsey is a popular keynote speaker and media commentator. In 2014, she co-created #OceanOptimism, a twitter campaign to crowd-source marine conservation solutions which has reached more than 95 million shares to date. In 2019 she served as a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University in the Graduate School of Education, bringing a critical emphasis on hope to an interdisciplinary think tank on environmental issues. As an Adjunct Faculty member of the University of Victoria School of Environmental Studies, she is spearheading the development of a solutions-oriented paradigm for educating environmental scientists and social scientists. She is a feature writer for Hakai Magazine and a best-selling Children’s Book Author. She enjoys serving as an author in residence in schools and leads environmental workshops for teachers, and kindergarten through university students, across North America and around the world.

Accommodations and Other Details

Contact The Foundation for WWU & Alumni for this event if you have questions or need disability accommodations by calling (360) 650-3353 or emailing

Advance notice for disability accommodations and special needs is greatly appreciated. Please indicate your special needs on the registration form.

There will be auto-captions available for the Zoom webinar.

Parking will be free starting at 3:30pm for this event in the C lot. Western provides comprehensive parking details—including lot locations, applicable fees, and campus map.