Embodied Environmental Risk in Technical Communication: Local and Global Contexts

deadline for submissions: 
October 15, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Samuel Stinson and Mary Le Rouge

Request for Chapters

Embodied Environmental Risk in Technical Communication: Local and Global Contexts

Deadline for Proposal Submissions: October 15, 2020.


We invite chapter proposals from both scholars and practitioners of environmental and disaster risk communication for an edited collection which the ATTW Book Series Editor, Tharon Howard, has invited us to submit for consideration for the research line of the ATTW Book Series in Technical and Professional Communication

Edited by Samuel Stinson, Minot State University and Mary Le Rouge, Kent State University


For the past twenty years, scholars in technical communications have been studying the difficulties of enacting effective risk and crisis communication policies to address local and global environmental problems such as pandemics, natural and manmade disasters, medical emergencies, and workplace and community dangers (Ding, 2014; Potts, 2014; Angeli 2019; Sauer, 2003; Wash & Walker, 2016; Frost, 2014). Moreover, differences exist between embodied experience and abstract representation, separating those at risk from institutional policymakers, which can make effective risk communication more difficult (Sauer, 2003). This is especially true in circumstances in which embodied knowledge is dismissed as unimportant in official documentation of risky environments (Sauer, 2003, p. 5-6). 

The objective of this collection is to improve technical communication for the general population through embodied, situated understanding of risk. In addition to providing a series of chapters about recent issues on risk communication, this volume offers a diverse look at methodological practices for researchers and practitioners looking to address embodied aspects of crisis and risk both locally and globally that incorporate UX, storytelling, and dynamic text with visuals.

We are looking to include chapters that bring embodiment to the forefront of risk communication, throughout the cycle of content creation, dissemination, public response and decision making, continuing iterations of educational efforts, and recovery, toward increasing adaptive capacity as a whole. In addition, we welcome contributions that focus on topics such as, but not limited to, overcoming perceptual difficulties, memory lapses, definitional differences, access issues, and pedagogical problems in the communication of risks to the general population. We invite work that holistically addresses:

  1. Representations of the human body as a site of public regulation through technical communication in response to health risks and crises.

Topics in this section could include:

  • environmental pollution and injustice

  • pandemic response, including physical distancing and mask wearing

  • warning systems for natural disasters

Chapters on medical communication are welcome, but must have a direct link to broader systemic environmental problems such as global warming (which has promoted habitat loss and thus zoonotic spread of disease), plastic and chemical pollution, population growth, or reduced air and water quality because of fossil fuel burning.

  1. Representations of the earth’s body and its parts/functions through technical communication.

Topics in this section could include:

  • state of health and natural abundance

  • illness, decay, imbalance, pollution

  • systems theory that views the planet as a working body of complex, intertwined parts, each affecting the other, as in Gaia theory

Work here might entertain notions of geography and spatial/mapping issues, renditions of natural earth cycles and processes, cosmology and Earth’s place in the universe. 

  1. Representations of natural & manmade disasters through technical communication, where both humans and the earth together are experiencing physical hardship and a symbiosis between the two is sought. 

    Topics in this section could include:

  • Concepts of balance and solutions that work toward synthesis of human/nonhuman ontologies

  • Relationships between humans and animals and nonhuman entities investigated as key toward creating synergies

  • Cyborg and artificial intelligence used to address risk

This could also include a consideration of transnational responses. These issues bring up questions such as: In what ways do representations of the earth’s body, specifically its parts and functions, mirror embodied human lived experience? How can we better understand and communicate about global crises in the context of the human body?


Please submit chapter proposals of no more than 500 words (not including citations) to envirorisksubmissions@gmail.com

Include author name(s), institutional affiliation, and email addresses. Highlight an area of concern that your chapter focuses on, what readers will take away with them, and a brief list of citations you would include.

Deadline for Proposal Submissions: October 15th, 2020

Notification of Acceptance: November 15th, 2020

Draft Chapters Due: March 15, 2021

Final Chapters Due: June 30, 2021