Academics discover civlity –
Guest essay by Eric Worrall
A study into why skeptics are not persuaded by the apocalyptic predictions of broken climate models has concluded that the solution is better communication.
According to the Toronto Star;
““When talking to skeptics it is probably important to focus on aspects that both skeptics and believers have in common rather than the differences between them,” said Ana-Maria Bliuc, a behavioural social scientist at Australia’s Monash University and one of the authors of the study.
As an example, the focus could be on “things like cleaner air, low power consumption, improved public transport, better waste management, efficient agriculture, reforestation … (they) are all in public interest, regardless of position on climate change,” she said.
Improving communication between the two sides of this big divide could be an effective pathway to reaching consensus, said Bliuc.
According to the study abstract;
“Of the climate science papers that take a position on the issue, 97% agree that climate change is caused by humans, but less than half of the US population shares this belief. This misalignment between scientific and public views has been attributed to a range of factors, including political attitudes, socio-economic status, moral values, levels of scientific understanding, and failure of scientific communication. The public is divided between climate change ‘believers’ (whose views align with those of the scientific community) and ‘sceptics’ (whose views are in disagreement with those of the scientific community). We propose that this division is best explained as a socio-political conflict between these opposing groups. Here we demonstrate that US believers and sceptics have distinct social identities, beliefs and emotional reactions that systematically predict their support for action to advance their respective positions.
The key implication is that the divisions between sceptics and believers are unlikely to be overcome solely through communication and education strategies, and that interventions that increase angry opposition to action on climate change are especially problematic. Thus, strategies for building support for mitigation policies should go beyond attempts to improve the public’s understanding of science, to include approaches that transform intergroup relations.”
This isn’t the first time researchers have blamed “communication” for climate skepticism.
Given that the abstract bases its rather imprecisely defined assumption of climate consensus on the heavily discredited Cook study http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/12/19/97-articles-refuting-the-97-consensus-on-global-warming/ , I suspect there may be problems other than communication which need to be addressed, before a common understanding can be achieved.