Thursday, June 02, 2016

Politics, Not Ignorance, May Pollute Support for Pro-Science Solutions

Runoff water (Credit: Click to Enlarge.
Mentioning politics in a message about an environmental issue may turn people -- even people informed about the issue -- away from supporting a pro-science solution, according to a team of researchers.

In a study, conservative participants who were asked to react to a message about excess water runoff showed lower support for an environmental science improvement project when the message was framed around global warming terminology, according to Lee Ahern, associate professor of advertising and public relations, Penn State.  The effect was even stronger among those conservatives with more knowledge about the issue, he added.

"It's the framing of the issue that's really important," said Ahern.  "This is really a message for scientists and science communicators: don't pollute and politicize the information environment around the issue, because once you do that, people's political identities are going to get engaged."

Read more at Politics, Not Ignorance, May Pollute Support for Pro-Science Solutions

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