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Tackling Climate Inaction

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Anna Lena Bercht

Tackling Climate Inaction

How a social identity approach matters to climate communication

We have reached a point where it is impossible to ignore climate change and its impacts – but this does not necessarily imply people are ready to act. As recent research shows, even when people are well-informed about climate change, appraise it as a current, visible, local and personal threat and express concern, their response in terms of facing challenges head on and translating their concern into climate-mitigative, adaptive and transformative behaviour seems restricted.

How does this knowledge-action gap arise? Also, it is striking that people who initially state that they do not worry about climate change, later seemingly contradict themselves by saying the opposite: “I am extremely worried.” Why is that? And how should climate change communication be adapted to meet these challenges and encourage climate action? This case is an example for a broader approach of a next level research communication.