Liv Yoon

Liv is a Liu Scholar and PhD student in socio-cultural kinesiology with research interests in the areas of critical ecology, environmental sociology, politics, and communication, and socio-political dimensions of sport mega-events. Her PhD research takes a critical approach to understanding how environmental controversies surrounding the Olympic Games are communicated by different organizations. The overarching goal of her dissertation is to understand how particular issues are characterized through different forms of communication, and in turn, how various means of communication may constrain or enable possible solutions. Through this research, she aims to provoke thinking about the role of communication in asking questions of power and collective responsibility, and in envisioning alternative political and environmental futures. An overarching purpose is to explore the role of socio-, economic-, and political dimensions of culture and communication in social change.

Liv is interested in critically exploring the constructions and implications of ‘sustainability’, ‘sustainable development’ and dominant environmental management paradigms such as ‘ecological modernization’. Guided by the conceptual frameworks of post-politics, de-/re-politicization and radical democracy, she aims to learn more about how environmental issues may represent, constitute, validate, and/or challenge political responsibility and commitment, as well as possibilities for alternative futures and discussions for how they can be achieved. She hopes to trace the power struggles underpinning environmental communication and politics – the sites for resolving issues, and moreover, sites of struggle in which unequal power relations and conflicts may be exacerbated or transcended.

Liv’s other academic interests span critical studies of power and social inequality (specifically around race and socioeconomic status). Prior to pursuing her PhD, Liv completed an MA in socio-cultural kinesiology at UBC with a focus on critical media studies and the Olympic Games, and holds a Bachelor’s of Physical and Health Education from Queen’s University.