PRESS RELEASE (2018 U.N. Psychology Day)


The 11th Annual Psychology Day at the United Nations

Climate Change: Psychological Interventions Promoting Mitigation and Adaptation


New York, New York, April 12, 2018 - Psychologists who represent NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) accredited at the United Nations will host the 11th Annual Psychology Day at the United Nations on Thursday, 12 April.


The theme of this year's conference is “Climate Change: Psychological Interventions Promoting Mitigation and Adaptation.” The topic was chosen to reflect the increasing importance of climate change in our world, especially in light of the prevalent number of natural disasters that have claimed thousands of lives and devastated many countries’ lands and economies. The topic also aligns with Sustainable Development Goal #13 of the United Nations 2030 Agenda, to “take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.” The information and recommendations will prepare for upcoming discussions when Goal #13 is reviewed in depth at the High Level Political Forum in 2019.


This program will consider ways that psychological theory, research and practice can mitigate against the deleterious impact that climate change and natural disasters have on individuals globally, address the human and systemic challenges climate change presents, help to develop resilient individuals and societies, and facilitate the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.


The conference will be held at United Nations New York headquarters in Conference Room 2 from 3:00PM to 6:00PM.


Psychology Day at the United Nations is an annual event sponsored by psychology organizations accredited by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and/or affiliated with the Department of Public Information (DPI). The event offers UN staff, ambassadors and diplomats, NGOs, members of the private and public sectors, students, invited experts, guests, media and other stakeholders, the opportunity to learn how psychological science and practice contributes to the UN agenda, and to exchange ideas and establish partnerships on global issues.


“Psychologists can play a vital role in bridging the gaps between science, individual attitudes and behaviors, and the long-term best interest of the collective,” said Leslie Popoff, Ph.D, Chair of the Psychology Day at the United Nations 2018 Planning Committee, and the United Nations Coordinator for the NGO ATOP Meaningfulworld.


Psychology Day at the UN 2018 is co-sponsored by the Permanent Mission of Palau and the Permanent Mission of the Dominican Republic to the United Nations.


Speakers include Susan Clayton, PhD, College of Wooster, presenting about The Role of Psychology in Responding to Climate Change; Irina Feygina, PhD, Climate Central, LLC, speaking about Psychological Contributions to Overcoming Disengagement and Fostering Compelling Solutions to Climate Change; Daniel Dodgen, PhD, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, addressing Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events: The Impact on Mental Health and Well Being; and Paul C. Stern, PhD, Social and Environmental Research Institute, explaining Changing the Behaviors that Drive Climate Change: What People Need to Understand, and How to Promote Change.


“These experts highlight psychosocial strategies to respond to the significant challenges confronting individuals and communities by current climate change crises,” said event moderator Walter Reichman, PhD, Main NGO Representative to the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) from the International Association of Applied Psychology (IAAP), Vice President of OrgVitality, a management consulting firm, and editor of “Industrial and Organizational Psychology Help the Vulnerable: Serving the Underserved,” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014).



Psychologists representing NGOs accredited at the UN come from varied specialties, including clinical, educational, social, developmental, counseling, community and industrial/organizational psychology. They participate in committees and working groups on various topics (e.g., the family, migration, technology, human rights, climate change and disaster recovery) and at invited high-level meetings; present side events at UN Commissions (e.g., for Social Development and on the Status of Women); design, implement and evaluate field projects related to the global goals (e.g., poverty eradication and women’s empowerment).


Admission to the conference is free. A reception requiring pre-registration follows the session at the Express Bar on the 3rd floor of UN headquarters.


Up-to-date information regarding the conference and reception is available at or by contacting: Non-UN pass holders must have registered in order to obtain a Special Events Ticket. Those who have not pre-registered (now closed) or who cannot be present, can view the conference live online at

Psychology Day 2018 can also be found on Facebook:, and Twitter @UNPsychologyDay #PsychDayUN2018 

Press Release Psychology Day at the United Nations 2018
Psych Day 2018 press release FINAL-2.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document 720.8 KB