COP21: A new chance for common sense and common action?

Professor Michael Brüggemann and his research team at the University of Hamburg have set up a blog called Media Watch Blog. This blog will report on the Paris climate summit, COP21, as it unfolds. Here is my contribution to the blog, reposted below in a slightly longer version. ••• The 2015 United Nations Climate Change …

Mike Hulme: Public Life of Climate Change, The First 25 Years

Mike Hulme, one of Making Science Public’s Honorary Associates, joined us in Nottingham today for a workshop about the role of scientific expertise and consensus in public life. Mike also gave a public lecture at lunchtime, which attracted a multidisciplinary audience from within the university, as well as members of the public from beyond the …

Families of climate scepticism I: faulty science?

At last week’s British Sociological Association conference, I presented some initial observations from my research on climate change scepticism. My starting point was that climate change scepticism – or as it is often inaccurately described, denial – is not monolithic. Those people typically labelled as sceptics vary in their arguments. Sometimes may employ many different arguments, some may focus on …

Weather 1, Climategate 0

A short post sparked by this new paper linking public ‘belief’ in climate change with the weather conditions at the time they were polled (£). From the abstract: Belief that humans are changing the climate is predicted by temperature anomalies on the interview and previous day, controlling for season, survey and individual characteristics. Or, as David …

From Katrina to Sandy: Searching online for links to climate change

This blog has been written by Alan Valdez (Open University) and Brigitte Nerlich When Hurricane Sandy, aka Superstorm, aka Frankenstrom, hit the Eastern Seaboard on 29 October and in particular New York, it caused extensive damage and left at least 199 people dead. It has been widely reported to be “the largest Atlantic hurricane on …

Short circuiting the language of Sandy – how to balance literalism and lucidity?

My previous post here at MSP reflected on comments in the BBC’s Climategate Revisited programme, suggesting that uncertainties in climate science have come to the fore in the years following the  publication of scientists’ emails. By being more open about such uncertainties, there may be a hope that some of the public trust lost after …

Echoes of Climategate: focusing on uncertainty?

The ever-lively climate blogosphere was given an extra jolt recently by a new BBC Radio 4 documentary – Climategate Revisited. The programme assessed the fallout from the infamous publication of emails from the University of East Anglia (UEA) server, rather than attempting to adjudicate on scientific claims or the contents of the emails. The programme …

The scientist as political tourist: the perils of pairing

On Wednesday last week (31 October 2012), BBC Radio Four’s ‘Today’ programme featured a scheme run by the Royal Society to promote interaction and engagement between civil servants, Parliamentarians and scientists. According to their website, the ‘Pairing Scheme’ seeks to match participating scientists ‘with either an MP or civil servant and the Royal Society supports …

Science, politics and the new scepticism

While I blogged on MSP a couple of times while finishing up my thesis on local and regional climate policy, I have now started on the programme full time as a Research Fellow. My project has a working title of Science, politics and scepticism in the age of new media, and aims to “map the …