Delhi OpenAQ ‘Unconference’ Brainstorm

Full workshop materials here.

The second half of Day 2 of the Delhi OpenAQ Workshop was spent ‘unconferencing.’ This is basically a fancy way of saying we left that time open for the group to explore topics that they identified as most useful.

We’ll be sharing out the main results from those discussions soon, but something that may be of interest to many communities in Delhi, India, and beyond is simply what the group thought would be interesting to discuss in this space in the first place! So here’s the list of brainstormed topics for the ‘Unconference’ session. The items on the list are a great place to identify existing areas of interest among the air quality community in Delhi and India.

‘Unconferencing’ Laundry List of Topics for Discussion

  • How can we bust air quality myths?! (e.g. change the perception that air pollution makes your lungs ‘stronger’)
  • How to connect people in the air quality space together (in India, not just Delhi)? Who/what is the convening force?

The above two were the main questions we focused on during the Unconference period. Below are remaining discussion questions.

Discussion points related to engaging the government:

  • How can we effectively lobby government and regulators to support air pollution mitigation policies and protective actions?
  • How do we convert information and data into government action? And advising what that action is.
  • How can the economic impact+story of air pollution be conveyed effectively to policymakers? (e.g. jobs)
  • How to get legal sector involved to ‘give teeth’ to efforts?

Discussion points on general communicating air quality science to the public:

  • Air Quality Index: Is it evil? Confusing? Good? (How can we make it better?)
  • How should one properly and responsibly capture and display low-cost sensor data? How should one handle communicating their error when there are no official guidelines anywhere?
  • How to convert data/research/facts into powerful stories? As Bani Bains from Clean Air Asia: “How do you humanize the data?”
  • How to make real-time data more relevant/in your face?

Discussion points on air quality science:

  • Is it time to look at PM1 and UFP?
  • How to better define/quantify air pollution sources? And how to translate existing/future results into action?

Discussion points beyond science - How to implement change:

  • Define ‘air inequality’ and environmental injustice in more detail.
  • How do you prioritize air pollution actions from one place to the next?
  • How do you prioritize air pollution compared to other serious issues?
  • What are the non-governmental levers that could be pushed to reduce pollution?
  • What are measures tried in various places that have had dramatic results?

What’s missing from this list that you would like to talk about? Tell us below.