Communicating Climate Science

Work thumb

Views: 213

  • Title: Communicating Climate Science: A Matter of Credibility—Swedish Farmers’ Perceptions of Climate-Change Information
  • Author(s): Therese Asplund
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: Climate Change: Impacts and Responses
  • Journal Title: The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses
  • Keywords: Climate-Change Communication, Credibility, Focus Groups, Frame Analysis
  • Volume: 10
  • Issue: 1
  • Year: 2018
  • ISSN: 1835-7156 (Print)
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/1835-7156/CGP/v10i01/23-38
  • Citation: Asplund, Therese . 2018. "Communicating Climate Science: A Matter of Credibility—Swedish Farmers’ Perceptions of Climate-Change Information." The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses 10 (1): 23-38. doi:10.18848/1835-7156/CGP/v10i01/23-38.
  • Extent: 16 pages

Abstract

While climate-change communication research has advanced in the last decade, we still lack a thorough discussion of the credibility aspects of climate-change information and communication. Concurrently, and perhaps somewhat paradoxically, communication theories suggest that whether a (climate change) frame resonates with a particular audience is due partly to its perceived credibility. This article addresses the under-researched question of how a particular audience perceives climate-change information. Based on focus group (FG) discussions with Swedish farmers, this article explores both participants’ perceptions of climate-change information as well as the formation of these perceptions. The analysis of FG transcripts and frame credibility finds that participants use multiple ways of judging the credibility of information related to climate change. Specifically, the analysis suggests that participants hold different views concerning whether consistent or contradictory climate information landscapes constitute credible information; what constitutes credible knowledge production processes (e.g., analytical vs. experience-based approaches); and the credibility of frame articulators. Lastly, the article discusses how scientific evidence can be better communicated to more effectively inform climate-change decision-making and advocates paying greater attention to audience segmentation based on audience perceptions of climate change information credibility.