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Maja Essebo

Maja Essebo

Director of Studies, Researcher

Maja Essebo

Storying COVID-19 : fear, digitalisation, and the transformational potential of storytelling


  • Maja Essebo

Summary, in English

Stories are being increasingly recognised for their potential as creators, not only depicters, of change. As such, they are receiving greater interest within sustainability science, not least in the approaches specifically focused on transformative processes of co-creation. But while highly powerful, stories are confined by both inherent and external frameworks that, if not acknowledged, limit their transformative potential. This paper addresses two such critical issues—fear and digitalisation—and discusses the ways in which they influence how and with what effects stories can be told. It uses the COVID-19 pandemic as illustration of storytelling processes and outlines some of the ways in which we can, and cannot, draw parallels between pandemic and climate change storytelling.


  • LUCSUS (Lund University Centre for Sustainability Studies)

Publishing year





Sustainability Science

Document type

Journal article




  • Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified


  • Climate change
  • COVID-19
  • Narrative theory
  • Story
  • Sustainability science




  • ISSN: 1862-4065