Conversation 1

W: Professor Henderson, could you give us a brief overview of what you do, where you work and your main area of research?

M: Well, the center for climate research where I work links science and climate change to issues around economics and policy. Some of our research is to do with the likely impacts of climate change and all of the associated risks.

W: And how strong is the evidence that climate change is happening that it’s really something we need to be worried about?

M: Well, most of the science of climate change, particularly that to do with global warming, is simply fact. But other aspects of the science are less certain or at least more disputed. And so we're rarely talking about risk. What the economics tells us is that it's probably cheaper to avoid climate change - to avoid the risk - than it is to deal with the likely consequences.

W: So what are we doing? What can we do about it?

M: Well, I would argue that we need to develop the science specifically to understand the likely impacts of climate change in different contexts. As I said, we need to understand the best ways of avoiding climate change. And this will involve a huge transition to low carbon energy systems. And the transition is a tremendous priority. And for this to happen, we may need action on a global scale. From a political perspective, we need to understand the terms on which major countries like China and the USA might sign up to a global agreement, because at the moment we don't have that consensus.

W: Right.

M: And we also need to plan ahead so that we are in a position to deal with the likely levels of climate change, which are already inevitable. And even more so, too, for the levels that are likely if we don’t get those global agreements.



Q1. What does Professor Henderson say about his main area of research?

Q2. What does Professor Henderson say about climate change?

Q3. What does Professor Henderson say is a top priority in combating climate change?

Q4. What does Professor Henderson advise us to do to better deal with climate change?


Conversation 2

W: I have many business English students. When I teach the classroom, we often end up talking about things like success and what leads to success. And it’s interesting that many of them mentioned the element of luck.

M: Right.

W: Luck is important to success, but since you have seen that fantastic video on the Ted Talk's website by Richard St. John…he doesn't mention luck at all.

M: Well, I'm a firm believer that people can make their own luck. I mean what people regard as luck you can actually create to a degree.

W: Sure. I think a lot of why people consider luck is attributed to how you respond to the opportunities that come your way.

M: Yes. Very good point.

W: Seizing the opportunities. But was there any point in the video that you thought was particularly interesting?

M: Yes, actually there was. Something very impressive to me is many people think that luck is important and that natural talent is something you must have in order to be successful. And in the video we saw, the point about getting good at something is not about having some natural talent, it's all about practice, practice, practice.

W: Definitely yeah, natural talent helps us in some way, but at the end of the day you really do need to work hard and get really really good at what you do.

M: Sure.

W: I thought one interesting thing in the video was the idea of passion being so important, and there're people who really love what they do. Of course, you’re going to want to work harder and put the time and effort into it. And the funny thing is that if you love what you do and are really passionate about it and work really hard, then money kind of comes automatically.


Q5. What are the speakers mainly talking about?

Q6. What is the woman's view of luck?

Q7. What is the chief point the Ted Talk's video makes?

Q8. What does the woman think is the funny thing in the Ted Talk's video?