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Climate change and the importance of COP26

Updated Monday, 20th September 2021

Learn about climate change from different disciplinary perspectives and how that knowledge and experience may explain and inform the outcomes of COP26.

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The UK in partnership with Italy are currently at the centre of international debates and actions on Climate change, as COP 26 in November 2021 is scheduled to take place in Glasgow. While Covid-19 places some uncertainty as to whether an online rather than physical meeting takes place, the realities of climate change do not wait. The Open University both teaches about and does research relevant to climate change. It has more than seven thousand staff and nearly 200,000 students who will be affected by climate change, let alone the millions of learners using OpenLearn.

This climate change page brings together existing OpenLearn content that is directly relevant to climate change which you can study but will also feature a series of weekly articles on different aspects of climate change as seen from the perspective of different constituencies across the whole Open University community. These weekly articles will start in September 2021 and will continue into the Spring of 2022.

Through these courses, articles and other content we hope to not only educate, inform and engage you but to provoke discussion, debate, and action from you. We need to see this as a global problem but one where local action, multiplied millions of times in homes and communities across the world can make a difference.

Discover more about the wider issue of sustainability in our interactive Sustainability Hub, featuring more articles plus videos, interactives and free courses on the subject.

And you can find even more free content from across the wider subject area of Nature & the Environment on OpenLearn.

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The development of this page has involved many people across the university:

Production team:

Advisory group:

  • Marjan Ajevski
  • Shonil Bhagwat
  • Richard Blundel
  • Nick Braithwaite
  • Clare Charlton
  • Julia Cooke
  • Jessica Davies
  • Emma Dewberry
  • Lucy Gilbert
  • Nicola Graham
  • Victoria Hands
  • Stuart Parris
  • Joanna Paul
  • Stephen Peake
  • Alison Penn
  • Jane Roberts
  • Shasha Wang​

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