hive mind informs climate change believers and sceptics

Survey of what drives debate


Both sides of the climate change debate tend towards group conciousness and define their positions based, in part, on hating the other side of the argument, according to a letter published in Nature: Climate Change.

Public division about climate change rooted in conflicting socio-political identities(PDF), penned by folks from Monash University, the University of Western Sydney, Murdoch University and Flinders University is based on an online survey conducted among a random sample of US residents, 120 of whom identified as climate change sceptics and 328 as believers .

The paper posits that debate about climate change might be “an intergroup conflict between two groups with conflicting views … (rather than between scientists and sections of the public). The authors therefore tried to assess respondents' “social identification” with others who share their view and level of anger with their ideological opponents. The survey also tried to examine “group efficacy beliefs”, a measure of faith in one's chosen cause.

“We found the contrasting opinions of believers and sceptics about the causes of climate change provided the basis of social identities that define who they are, what they stand for, and who they stand with (and against),” said one of the letter's authors, Dr Ana-Maria Bliuc from Monash University's School of Social Sciences. And once one's identity is defined in part by taking sides in a debate, both sceptics and believers become so emotionally invested in their cause, and so determined to override their opponents arguments, that debate descends into an increasingly noisy and acrimonious cycle.

“An integrated cluster of group consciousness factors comprising identification with these groups, anger at the opposing group and beliefs that the group can achieve its political goal through collective action predicted political action intentions and actually politically relevant behaviour,” the letter suggests.

the mind of a climate change believer

This is a climate change believer's brain

Dr Bliuc suggests that it's necessary to take the heat out of the climate change argument to advance it.

“Strategies for building support for mitigation policies should go beyond attempts to improve the public’s understanding of science, to include approaches that will change the relationship between the two groups,” she suggests.

How climate sceptics think

No way is this how climate change sceptics think.

Broader topics


Other stories you might like

  • US won’t prosecute ‘good faith’ security researchers under CFAA
    Well, that clears things up? Maybe not.

    The US Justice Department has directed prosecutors not to charge "good-faith security researchers" with violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) if their reasons for hacking are ethical — things like bug hunting, responsible vulnerability disclosure, or above-board penetration testing.

    Good-faith, according to the policy [PDF], means using a computer "solely for purposes of good-faith testing, investigation, and/or correction of a security flaw or vulnerability."

    Additionally, this activity must be "carried out in a manner designed to avoid any harm to individuals or the public, and where the information derived from the activity is used primarily to promote the security or safety of the class of devices, machines, or online services to which the accessed computer belongs, or those who use such devices, machines, or online services."

    Continue reading
  • Intel plans immersion lab to chill its power-hungry chips
    AI chips are sucking down 600W+ and the solution could be to drown them.

    Intel this week unveiled a $700 million sustainability initiative to try innovative liquid and immersion cooling technologies to the datacenter.

    The project will see Intel construct a 200,000-square-foot "mega lab" approximately 20 miles west of Portland at its Hillsboro campus, where the chipmaker will qualify, test, and demo its expansive — and power hungry — datacenter portfolio using a variety of cooling tech.

    Alongside the lab, the x86 giant unveiled an open reference design for immersion cooling systems for its chips that is being developed by Intel Taiwan. The chip giant is hoping to bring other Taiwanese manufacturers into the fold and it'll then be rolled out globally.

    Continue reading
  • US recovers a record $15m from the 3ve ad-fraud crew
    Swiss banks cough up around half of the proceeds of crime

    The US government has recovered over $15 million in proceeds from the 3ve digital advertising fraud operation that cost businesses more than $29 million for ads that were never viewed.

    "This forfeiture is the largest international cybercrime recovery in the history of the Eastern District of New York," US Attorney Breon Peace said in a statement

    The action, Peace added, "sends a powerful message to those involved in cyber fraud that there are no boundaries to prosecuting these bad actors and locating their ill-gotten assets wherever they are in the world."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022