CLIMATE SCIENCE MESSAGING RESOURCES

From public skepticism about anthropogenic warming, to the role that scientists can play as messengers, these resources tackle the challenge of communicating about climate science.

 

 

Collection Resources

Check out the resources below (social media toolsbackground informationand infographics) for communicating about the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report.

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A quick guide to what it means when climate scientists say they are 95% certain that humans are mostly to blame for global temperature increases.

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A primer from the Climate Institute describes the terminology of “carbon jargon” and graphically explains why carbon dioxide and other emissions are considered carbon pollution.
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An analysis of the climate scientist community that assesses the level of agreement about anthropogenic warming among climate experts.

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This guide from the Union of Concerned Scientists provides "do's and don'ts" for addressing personal attacks against scientists, including how to deal with harassing correspondence and how to respond to hostile bloggers.

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A survey of climate blog users aims to identify the variables underlying acceptance and rejection of climate science and the connection to endorsement of conspiracy theories and perception of scientific consensus.

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An article on how scientists can improve their ability to communicate with the public about complex issues like climate change by developing storytelling skills and by “not by dumbing things down, but by smartening up how we convey what we know.”

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A study of motivated reasoning within the context of science communication that examined how science-based messages may increase public polarization on controversial issues like climate change.

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Guidelines from Nicholas Steneck (director of the Research Ethics and Integrity Program of the Michigan Institute for Clinical and Health Research) for scientists to keep in mind when communicating about climate change, especially within a public policy context.

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An examination of the public perception of climate change, reasons behind large-scale public confusion about the science, the use of climate modeling, and communication challenges.

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An examination of the root of climate science denial and a review of the resources that teachers and students can use to recognize denialist tactics.  

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An analysis of the current capacity of the climate science communications field as it relates to the needs of decision makers (by RESOLVE for the Hewlett Foundation and the Packard Foundation).

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A Yale survey finds that people with high levels of scientific literacy are more culturally polarized. The findings are consistent with the notion that climate change has become highly politicized, but divisions are due to worldviews not merely partisanship.

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A study that explores trends in public trust in science from 1974 to 2010, which found that conservatives began the time period with the highest levels of trust in science and ended with the lowest.

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A reflection on the dichotomy between Americans' actual and perceived climate literacy and the need to train emerging scholars in science and risk communication in order to combat the partisan "culture war" of the climate change debate.

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Sample responses that climate communicators can use when facing common challenges to climate science.

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An interactive presentation by Sightline Institute that provides an overview of public opinion on climate change, a discussion of the challenges associated with motivating action, and recommendations for communicating about climate science.

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An article framing the media as the referee in a wrestling match - between science and reason on one side, and polluters and right-wing ideologues on the other - before presenting solutions.

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An article discussing the role of science and scientists, as many are becoming more vocal and active in the face of climate change.

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An article about President Obama's scientific research and education proposal and the challenges of the politicization of science and climate denial rhetoric in Washington.

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An article that examines public opinion of climate science, including "mental shortcuts," confusion about scientific uncertainty, and values.

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Following "Climategate," the author asserts that scientists should take a more central communications role in translating climate science to the public.

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A study of the confusion and misinformation around climate science and the need for educators and scientists to improve information and communication methods.

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A media analysis that examines the influence of ideology in climate science reporting on public opinion.

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