Shifting the Narrative

With my University of Edinburgh hat on, I was recently awarded a grant from the British Academy to collaborate with some wonderful colleagues to explore the experiences and opinions of tellers who work with stories to help individuals and communities shift to more sustainable ways of living. This included nature connection work, intersectoral work, place-based storytelling, traditional storytelling, performance storytelling, environmental education and ranger work, amongst other things.

The project ran from January to the end of June 2022 and we had input from 33 storytellers in the UK and another 23 working elsewhere. Across these participants, we had approximately 500 years of storytelling experience represented! We also attended 5 events involving storytelling as participant observers.

Below you can find out more information about the project and about events, podcasts, publications etc. in which we share what we found out.

  • Here is a partial list of the storytellers who took part in our study. Others have preferred to remain anonymous.
  • To see what we asked people to report on, here is a copy of the surveys we sent out Survey responses informed the questions we asked those storytellers and tradition bearers that we interviewed and the notes we took at events.
  • We asked storytellers to share with us examples of the stories they work with in relation to nature and the environment. Here is a compilation of the stories they mentioned, with links where we could find them. Link.
  • We also asked storytellers to recommend networks, festivals and venues. Here is a compilation of their responses.
  • We were funded by the British Academy, an organisation that is particularly interested in informing policy through research. Here is a link to the final report that we sent them, again with that leaning towards policy.
  • We will be doing a half-day online workshop informed by our findings through the Scottish International Storytelling Festival’s Global Labs on the afternoon of 25th October 2022. Link to follow.
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