Thursday, December 10, 2009

December 10th, 1:45 PM EST

Washington-Dulles International Airport

We've made it to the airport ahead of schedule, with plenty of time to kick back - and blog. The past two months have been a whirlwind, from first learning of this opportunity, to rescheduling exams and booking plane tickets, and finally arranging accreditation and finding a place to crash. We would be remiss not to thank the people and professors who have made this trip possible - first and foremost, the wonderful Professor Beach, whose enthusiasm and support were invaluable to us. To the rest of the STIA department, especially Dr. Lewis, we also owe a debt of gratitude for their guidance and advice for the conference. And finally, to all those professors who blatantly ignored department rules and arranged for our exams to happen a bit, er, unconventionally.

I'd like to answer a common question I've gotten over the past few weeks - what exactly will you be doing in Copenhagen? Besides having the adventure of our lives, we're going to be carrying out a bit of public opinion research as a group project between the four of us, as well as pursuing individual interests and projects (and future employers) while there. Look for a panel presentation and possible documentary viewing when we come back for the spring semester. The project will center around the environmental movement itself - the people and organizations that comprise it; their motives, goals, and obstacles; and the United Nations itself as a forum for negotiating on climate change. Through surveys and interviews, we hope to document or "map" the movement. The diversity of our groups serves us well - Julia is an Anthropology major bringing field experience and a cultural studies background. Olivia is majoring in Chemistry with a strong outside interest in grassroots work and social justice. Kathryn and I are both STIA (Science, Technology, and International Affairs) majors, specializing on the intersection between science and policy. Together, we hope to get a pretty good snapshot at the factors at work in the COP 15 negotiations.

Shortly we'll be boarding, but in future posts, look for more information on our day-to-day at the conference, updates on our research, and the deal on Morten, our Danish host whose couch we're crashing.

Venlig Hilsen,

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