Strategic Dialogue and Engagement for Climate Adaptation

Professionals working across public, private and community sectors are facing complex questions about how to prepare for and adapt to the unavoidable impacts of a changing climate. In the context of a growing climate emergency, how do we engage internal and external stakeholders, build lasting collaborative partnerships, and embed climate adaptation strategies into organizational priorities, when professional silos, scarce resources and competing demands can pose potent obstacles to the change that is urgently needed?

This course will provide you with skills to overcome barriers to action, mobilize knowledge and data effectively, and work across silos in genuine interdisciplinary and collaborative practice. You’ll learn how to lead or participate in community engagement, without triggering fear and overwhelming others; practise critical self-awareness and self-reflection; and consider equity-based and decolonizing approaches.

This course is designed for professionals looking to advance the intersecting work of climate action and adaptation, including planners, engineers, elected officials and community leaders. You will leave with practical and relevant skills to lead, accelerate and participate in the essential work of climate adaptation in your organization and community.


Location: Online
Format: Self-paced within deadlines set by instructor
8 weeks
Tuition: $699
Can be applied to:
Climate Action Certificate

Upcoming Offerings

Start Date
Seats Available
Start DateWed, Apr 2, 2025
  • Wed, Apr 2 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, Apr 9 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, Apr 16 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, Apr 23 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, Apr 30 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, May 7 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, May 14 (self-paced all week)
  • Wed, May 21 (self-paced all week)
InstructorOlive Dempsey
Seats Available21

What you will learn

After completing this course, you’ll be able to do the following:

  • Describe the dynamics of collaborative, team-based planning processes
  • Apply key concepts in climate communications and knowledge mobilization
  • Engage in meaningful dialogue with internal and external stakeholders
  • Develop adaptive and responsive strategies for working in complex systems
  • Analyze and overcome internal and external barriers to climate adaptation

How you will learn and be evaluated

  • Prepare to spend about 10 hours per week on coursework
  • Expect reading, online discussions, course work and supplementary activities, such as viewing assigned videos

You can also expect to hear from a number of guest speakers during this course. The list may change depending on availability, but previous speakers have included: 

  • Amber Bennett, Climate Communications Strategist, Canadian Associate, Climate Outreach
  • Jessie Hemphill, founder and senior planner, Alderhill Planning Inc 
  • Steve Litke, Director, Water Programs, Fraser Basin Council
  • Colleen Mercer-Clarke, Landscape Architect, Chair of Climate Change committee Canadian Society of Landscape Architects
  • Tamsin Mills, Climate Change Adaptation and Sustainability Planner, City of Vancouver
  • Trevor Murdock, Climate Scientist
  • Harshan Radhakrishnan, Manager, Climate Change and Sustainability Initiatives, Engineers and Geoscientists BC
  • Hiran Sandanayake, Senior Engineer, Water Resources, City of Ottawa, Chair of Climate Change Committee for Canadian Water and Wastewater Association
  • Ione Smith, Director, Upland Agricultural Consulting
  • Kari Tyler, MEd

Learning Materials

No textbook is required. We will provide all course materials online.

Technical Requirements

For online courses, you will need a computer with audio and microphone that is connected to the internet. Canvas is the online system that will be used for the course. For more information and online support, visit Online Learning.

Professional development credits

AIBC CES participants, PIBC members and BCSLA members may self-report for continuing education learning unit consideration.

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