At The Three Cultures Summit on Climate Change, What Scientists Want to Learn From Social Scientists


I'm spending the weekend in Oregon at an outpost on the edge of the Columbia River Valley. I'm in town for a unique three cultures summit on climate change, a workshop that brings together scientists, social scientists, philosophers, poets, and artists to discuss strategies and methods for public engagement and communication.

This afternoon we broke into separate disciplinary groups and embarked on a short hike to reflect on what we would like to learn from the other disciplines. When we returned, I jotted down the following notes on what scientists said they would most like to learn or know from social scientists. Here's what they said:

Practical specific applications of framing

Data on different values of different segments of society regarding climate change

How to get policy makers to listen.

Establish an ongoing formal dialogue and partnership with social scientists on sustainability and science.

How to listen effectively given a diversity of social values (communication should be a 2 way street)

Guidance on where to best target our efforts i.e. which segments of the public?

How to communicate through social networks

Help with understanding the practical limits of effective advocacy.

Studies of the culture of science.

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Good post, had never heard of three summit conferences before. sounds like my cup of tea, marrying art and poety and science and Can I submit my polar cities idea to them for next year consideration?

DANNY in Taiwan

Does "Studies of the culture of science" mean studies internal to science (Latour, Knorr Cetina, Atkinson) or studies of science in culture generally (Nelkin, Gregory & Miller, Wynne), or both, or either, or...?

The summit sounds fascinating and I look forward to reading more about it.

By Rhetorician (not verified) on 07 Mar 2009 #permalink

Wonderful! Do you have any tips, or did the conference provide any tips for channels through which such information might be provided to the people who want it? I'm doing work that relates specifically to some of those questions. Would be happy to find good outlets for the results.

`How to get policy makers to listen.`

This may be the hardest problem of all, especially when it comes to problems that will not fully emerge until long after today`s politicians are out of office.