New issue of Daedalus features essays from sixteen climate change witnesses

September 24, 2020

CAMBRIDGE, MA - September 24, 2020--This week, the that features essays by sixteen prominent climate change witnesses, representing multiple fields, backgrounds, and generations. Guest edited by Nancy L. Rosenblum (Harvard University), the volume assembles personal narratives from men and women immersed in the greatest problem of our time, perhaps of all time.

The many and varied dangers of climate change propel scientists, doctors, public health experts, social scientists, lawyers, journalists, business consultants, and military officers to speak out from the vantage point of their specialized knowledge. We call them witnessing professionals. Their personal narratives describe paths into climate-related work, the constraints imposed on them by disciplinary boundaries and by standard codes of professional ethics, and the need to move beyond them.

Witnessing professionals act on the imperative to communicate widely what they know, and reflect on the broader ethical challenges and political demands of addressing decision-makers and the public. They build institutions to extend their work. Climate change shapes their professional identity and expands their sense of responsibility. They push the bounds of their fields and they push themselves as witnessing professionals. The authors describe painful setbacks while balancing on the knife-edge of hope.
To learn more about Daedalus and explore the issue, visit

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Representing the intellectual community in its breadth and diversity, Daedalus explores the frontiers of knowledge and issues of public importance. Drawing on the enormous intellectual capacity of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, whose members are among the world's most prominent thinkers in the sciences, humanities, arts, and social sciences, as well as the professions and public life, each issue of Daedalus features multidisciplinary, authoritative essays centered on a theme or subject. For questions and more information, please contact

Daedalus is published for the American Academy of Arts and Sciences by the MIT Press. Established in 1962, the MIT Press is one of the largest and most distinguished university presses in the world and a leading publisher of books and journals at the intersection of science, technology, art, social science, and design. MIT Press books and journals are known for their intellectual daring, scholarly standards, interdisciplinary focus, and distinctive design.

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