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Science communication and mediatised environmental conflict: a cautionary tale
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-20, 20:34 authored by Claire KonkesClaire Konkes, Foxwell-Norton, K
When Australian physicist, Peter Ridd, lost his tenured position with James Cook University, he was called a ‘whistleblower’, ‘contrarian academic’ and ‘hero of climate science denial’. In this article, we examine the events surrounding his dismissal to better understand the role of science communication in organised climate change scepticism. We discuss the sophistry of his complaint to locate where and through what processes science communication becomes political communication. We argue that the prominence of scientists and scientific knowledge in debates about climate change locates science, as a social sphere or fifth pillar in Hutchins and Lester’s theory of mediatised environmental conflict. In doing so, we provide a model to better understand how science communication can be deployed during politicised debates.
Publication titlePublic Understanding of Science
Department/SchoolSchool of Creative Arts and Media
PublisherSage Publications Ltd.
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
Rights statement© The Author(s) 2021