There are so many areas in need of attention and action in our world. This can be made possible through active participation and social altering programs that change our environment both physically and psychologically through awareness and the like. “Social change research comes in several different forms, but the general idea is that the researcher(s) are actively changing something in a social situation that they are a part of” (PSU World Campus, 2017). In a time when the world is meeting innovation and coming to the actualization and realization of catastrophic proportions of environmental damages and challenges we must intervene while conducting research. For this reason, there have been numerous organizations with wonderful outlooks actively participating in our world and societies to create change. Change maybe in the form of saving one species of an animal or its environment, lobbying for political support and protection, and research to discover new sustainable ways to create energy, food, and all substantial needs that our growing population commands.
This positive outlook is greatly shared by Marco Lambertini, Director General, WWF International. He is refreshing in that he believes while our environmental needs are at an all time importance and high so is our capabilities through science. As he says, “science has never been so clear” (World Wildlife Fund, 2017).
This organization should be considered an Activist Research group. This type of social change research goes beyond participatory and is vested in the outcome in which it is researching and trying to make changes in (PSU World Campus, 2017). WWF’s website boasts, “WWF’s unique way of working combines global reach with a foundation in science, involves action at every level from local to global, and ensures the delivery of innovative solutions that meet the needs of both people and nature” (World Wildlife Fund, 2017). Through the use of social media and utilization of experts great strides are being made to conserve, save, and create new strategies that help the environment and its creatures it contains. These experts range from biologists, scientists, and policy makers. They go on to invite everyone to join in with spreading awareness and taking an active “vested” role from an entry level.
They reach their goals through utilization of marketing partners, humanitarian partners, and corporate partnerships. Part of their core mission is best described in their mission statement and information area on their site. It says, “our new strategy puts people at the center and organizes our work around six key areas: forests, marine, freshwater, wildlife, food and climate. By linking these six areas in an integrated approach, we can better leverage our unique assets and direct all our resources to protecting vulnerable places, species and communities worldwide” (World Wildlife Fund, 2017). So how do they do this? Well one way is through research and evaluation leading to intervention. The research and evaluation could be assessing the needs of a small rural town getting fresh water in a low income nation with substandard water supply. They come up with creative solutions through funding of donations and grants from governments and corporations (like Coca Cola). In this example they impact the area by creating not just a fresh water supply but a way to water and grow crops which helps with food, erosion, and plants that help with the climate. This is just one example from this foundation. They look to utilize great minds with great hearts, to achieve great things. No matter your location geographically or capabilities personally you can always make an impact through this organization. It can be by donating money, your time, or even just the simple act of spreading awareness. I invite you to visit their website at https://www.worldwildlife.org/. You will recognize their lovable panda mascot and can become a part of the solution for our growing needs.
Pennsylvania State University, 2017. PSYCH 424 Lesson 13: Social Change/Participatory Research. Retrieved from https://psu.instructure.com/courses/1834710/modules/items/21736701.
World Wildlife Fund. (2017). World Wildlife Fund About Us. Retrieved April 16, 2017, from https://www.worldwildlife.org/about