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Climate change and the potential to inspire behaviour change Dr Penny Fidler.

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Presentation on theme: "Climate change and the potential to inspire behaviour change Dr Penny Fidler."— Presentation transcript:

1 Climate change and the potential to inspire behaviour change Dr Penny Fidler

2 ASDC Vision A society where people are intrigued, inspired and involved with the sciences

3 ASDC Mission To bring together the ASDC membership to play a strategic role in the nations engagement with science

4

5 Carbon emissions and climate science

6 2005 Believe that climate change is happening 91% (4% did not) Believe there are risks to people in Britain 77% Believe there are benefits to people in Britain 13% Are concerned about climate change 82% Public perceptions of climate change and energy futures in Britain in 2005

7 Believe that climate change is happening 91% (4% did not)78% (15% did not) Believe there are risks to people in Britain 77%66% Believe there are benefits to people in Britain 13%18% Are concerned about climate change 82%71% Public perceptions of climate change and energy futures in Britain in 2010 Spence et al 2010 (School of Psychology, Cardiff University) 1,822 people Interviewed Jan- Mar 2010

8 Reasons for 2010 decline in belief that climate change is man-made Potential causes (unproven!) Media coverage of s from climate scientists from University of East Anglia in early 2010 Stalled Copenhagen talks It is now in the realm of politicians not only scientists? Cognitive Dissonance (modifying beliefs around uncomfortable truths to avoid changing behaviour) / Learned helplessness Fatigue / boredom over climate change causing a cognitive switch off (as with HIV adverts in late 1980s)

9 Mainly or entirely a man- made phenomena 31% A product of both human and natural activities 47% Mainly or entirely a product of natural activities 18% Who or what causes climate change? Spence et al 2010 (School of Psychology, Cardiff University) % Believe climate change is: 40 % feel seriousness is exaggerated

10 However, we are not alone… others have looked at how to inspire people to change their behaviour Psychologists, social scientists, economists, public health researches, prison workers and many others have been studying the motivators for behaviour change for many years

11 Pensions Do you want to retire with adequate savings: Yes Do you want to set up a pension plan now: No Save more tomorrow pension plan Employees given option in advance of a pay rise, to put any future pay rises into a pension plan. They can opt out any time. Pension contributions increased (on average) from 3.5% to 13.6% with 80% of staff staying in for 4 pay rises (POST 328)

12 The Psychology of Delaying Gratification Peoples preferences are not consistent in time (Time inconsistencies and present bias) Would you prefer… £100 in 18 month or £50 in 12 months? £50 today or £100 in 6 months? Immediate rewards are perceived to be more valuable (health, obesity, pensions, smoking) An individuals climate change actions currently have no immediate visible reward

13 Creating behaviour change by changing social norms…shame The Drink driving campaign

14 Is this similarly shameful?

15 I have a dream …

16 plastic bags …

17 Science Museums Exploring Climate Science Gallery

18 W5, Belfast

19 W5 feedback for staff: Energy and carbon

20 How have W5 reduced energy consumption Monitoring all usage Feedback to staff Commitment from CEO and senior managers Changing light fittings Changing working practice eg exhibition lights off until 15 minutes before opening and turned off as soon as the last visitor leaves Changed office practice in relation to lights, computers etc Water usage was reduced radically in 2005 by changing how all water exhibits operated Recycling plant recovers in excess of 90% for recycling

21 Experts in... Inspiring people Involving people Getting people talking

22 Thank you Dr Penny Fidler


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