A screen-writing competition for the age of Climate Change

The Tobias-Shaw Climate Science Laboratory convenes student performers and climate scientists to develop compelling theatre informed by what we know about the science of climate change and the communication challenges surrounding it.

£2000

grand prize!

Our inaugural program is a summer-long series of workshops and events to prompt development of scientifically informed comedic scripts for a Fall competition with £2000 grand prize towards production costs of witty scientifically informed climate comedy on a canal boat stage that travels London.

Welcome to the Anthropocene!

The Mesozoic was the Age of Dinosaurs. The Devonian was the Age of Fishes. We live in the Anthropocene, the Age of Man-made Climate Change. Scientists debate whether it began with the birth of agriculture, the Industrial Revolution, or the “Great Acceleration” of global economies after WWII. The undeniable consequences of climate change have prompted a new category of books to appear on store shelves: “cli-fi”, climate fiction. And none too soon. For for all the precision of their research, scientists and policy makers alone have not compelled the world to act. Maybe it’s time for performers to assume a greater role?

What you need to create scientifically informed climate comedy

  • WEEKLY WORKSHOPS

    Led by theatre professionals, comedians and scientists to provide feedback and help performers shape their entries for the Fall competition.
    WHERE: On the floating canal boat/stage Molly Anna.

  • WEEKLY BOOK CLUBS

    Meetings to discuss important climate-fiction and climate-nonfiction works with scientists and authors.
    WHERE: On the Book Barge at Kings Cross.

  • WEEKLY FILM SCREENINGS

    Screenings and discussions with scientists, screen writers and filmmakers to review how others have approached this same challenge.
    WHERE: At a location to be determined.

Sign up to learn more

If you are an aspiring actor or writer who wants to use their wit to change the world — or you teach young people who share that goal – leave your contact information here to be invited to our first movie screening and informational kick-off program, anticipated in mid-July somewhere on the Regents Canal.

Free help with your script!

Beginning in July we have a jam-packed schedule of workshops, book club meetings, movie screenings and mixers for contest aspirants to meet with theatre professionals and climate scientists to hone finished scripts for submission in time for the Fall deadline.

Our distinguished colleagues

Entries in the competition will be evaluated with the help of guidelines and a panel of judges recruited by Iowa State University’s Eco Theatre Lab, with input from leading climate researchers including Grantham Institute’s co-Director, and Britain’s most famous glaciologist, Martin Siegert.

Other project partners and workshop leaders include the Alan Alda Center for Science Communication from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Standup comedian and Imperial College climate scientist Matt Winning. Steve Cross, the “Science Show off” whose job is teaching scientists to be funny. And Alfie Noakes, mastermind and chief funny man behind the “We Are Funny” project which has nurtured the careers of hundreds of London comics.

Employment Opportunity

Climate Comedy Workshop Producer

Opportunity for an early career theatre producer to identify, hire and coordinate workshop facilitators and co-administer the program, starting immediately and continuing through the Fall. The position is short-term (four months) and full-time.

Click here for more information.