'Changing Behaviors to Preserve the Planet' topic of Feb. 25 event

February 19, 2010

At 2 p.m. on Feb. 25, a group of Penn State faculty, staff and students will present "Acting Green: Changing Behaviors to Preserve the Planet," in room 101 of the Wagner Building on Penn State's University Park campus.

The conference will address methods of changing people's behaviors so they use resources more efficiently in an era of changing climate and higher energy demands.

The event also will be be made available via Adobe Connect to allow viewing from a computer. For more information on Adobe Connect availability, send an e-mail to map40@psu.edu.

For the first time, the presenters will show the results of a ground-breaking study performed during last fall’s Student Energy Challenge. The Energy Challenge featured Student Eco-Reps, trained student environmental champions who educated their peers through programming and everyday conversation. Presenters will tell the audience what worked and what didn't in terms of getting people to change their actions. The presenters also will share key lessons from the recent National Behavior, Energy and Climate Change Conference held in Washington, D.C.


Janet Swim is a professor of psychology at Penn State. In the last three years she has become actively involved in efforts to increase psychologists’ involvement in understanding the psychological dimensions of climate change. This work has been mainly through the American Psychological Association as the chair of a recently completed task force report on the interface between psychology and global climate change.

Matthew Zawadzki is a fourth year graduate student in social psychology and women’s studies focusing on ways to apply social psychological research to real-world interventions. He has worked with Penn State Housing, OPP, and the Sustainability Office to devise and test strategies to reduce the amount of energy Penn State students use in the residence halls.

Brittany Bloodhart is a graduate student in the dual doctorate program in social psychology and women’s studies. She primarily studies social justice issues of sexism and climate change; specifically, who is more likely to care about injustice, how attitudes and beliefs alter perceptions of injustice, and how to influence awareness of and action against injustice. She is also involved with applying psychological research at Penn State to get students to reduce their energy use on campus.

Lydia Vandenbergh is the faculty and staff program coordinator for Penn State’s Campus Sustainability Office and brings her passion, knowledge and energy to the Green Teams and Environmental Forums programs. After having spent nine years as a researcher and writer for OPP’s Communications Department, she helped to establish this new office in 2008. She also has worked with Swim and her graduate students to study behavior change methodology and applications.

Last Updated January 09, 2015