Over the past two years, the environmental psychology section of the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) has produced resources for the public to understand better how psychology can help to address climate change. Recently, a task force of section members composed a position paper for the CPA to communicate key studies and make recommendations to governments as they include psychology in decision-making. The section also published a Fact Sheet for the CPA to inform the public about climate anxiety. This talk will offer a brief overview of the discipline of environmental psychology, as well as these two documents, before describing a compelling psychological construct that associates with both climate anxiety and pro-environmental attitudes and behaviour: sense of place. Dr. McCunn will also discuss some of the latest research found in the body of environmental psychology literature concerning how beneficial nature can be for human mental health and wellbeing.
About the Speaker
Dr. Lindsay McCunn is a Professor of psychology at Vancouver Island University and the Director of VIU’s Environmental Psychology Research Lab. She is also the Principal of McCunn & Associates Consulting. Dr. McCunn received her BA, MSc, and PhD at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada, and earned an additional MSc in applied neuroscience from King’s College London in the UK. Lindsay’s research is published in a number of interdisciplinary journals that merge social science with engineering, sustainability, community planning, health care design, and facilities management. She is the Chair of the environmental psychology section of the Canadian Psychological Association and the Past-Chair of the Environmental Design Research Association. She is also the co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Environmental Psychology.