Social ties and concern for global warming
Juha Itkonen ()
Climatic Change, 2015, vol. 132, issue 2, 173-192
Recent research focusing on social factors affecting risk perceptions has suggested that social networks might help to explain why differences of opinion about climate change persist across segments of the lay public despite the scientific consensus. Even though concern for global warming in itself might seem irrelevant for most social ties, we show that it is significant enough to be reflected in the structure of social networks. To do this, we programmed a Facebook application that collected survey data on concerns and network data on friendships. We found that respondents tend to have friends with similar concerns as their own, the unconcerned respondents have fewer friends, and any two respondents who disagreed about the seriousness of global warming were less than half as likely to be friends. The results indicate that the structure of the social network may hinder changes in opinions, explaining why opinions persist despite the scientific consensus. The results suggest that the communication of climate science could be improved by strategies that aim to overcome these network effects. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015
Keywords: Climate change; Social networks; Science communication (search for similar items in EconPapers)
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (2) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:spr:climat:v:132:y:2015:i:2:p:173-192
Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from
Access Statistics for this article
Climatic Change is currently edited by M. Oppenheimer and G. Yohe
More articles in Climatic Change from Springer
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Sonal Shukla () and Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing ().