Alette Willis

Book Alette Willis

As a storyteller, Alette Willis specialises in using storytelling for nature connection, environmental consciousness raising and science communication. She has been Storyteller in Residence to the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, a Talking Tree at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and regularly can be found telling stories at the Edinburgh International Science Festival. She co-wrote a ground-breaking collection of eco-themed traditional tales, Dancing with Trees: Eco-Tales of the British Isles (History Press), with collaborator Allison Galbraith in 2017.

As a researcher and senior lecturer, Alette has been studying how people, communities and societies use stories in ethical decision-making and social transformation. At the University of Edinburgh, she contributes storytelling skills sessions to Masters programmes in Science Communication, Outdoor Education and Environmental Education, as well as to undergraduates studying health communication. She regularly teaches workshops on storytelling skills for research communication at the Institute for Academic Development and the Edinburgh Beltane Knowledge Exchange Network. She runs bespoke training on narrative and research communication for universities and research institutes across the UK and internationally. Her new course, ‘Story Roots for Sustainable Futures’, will be available as a for-credit post-graduate course and a CPD course through the Edinburgh Futures Institute from Autumn 2022.

She has a background in community health as well as in geography and environmental studies, and is a collaborator with Lily Asch on the Real Talk project, using personal storytelling to transform how individuals and communities perceive mental health.

Drawing on her years of research, teaching and storytelling, Alette is currently writing a book on the role stories play in transforming communities and societies to address the local and global crises of our time.

To find out more about Alette’s work and get involved in the learning opportunities she offers, you can connect with her online at, @AletteJWillis (Twitter), @Eddafied (Instagram), and on LinkedIn.


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