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<h2><em>Worldview Backfire in the Context of Ideologically-Tailored Climate Change Messaging</em></h2> <p>Edward Clarke<sup>1,2</sup> (eddie.clarke@monash.edu), Emily Kothe<sup>2</sup>, Shaini Ratnatilake<sup>2</sup>, Hayley Robinson<sup>2</sup>, Anna Klas<sup>2</sup>, Mathew Ling<sup>2</sup></p> <p><em>(1) Monash University</em> </p> <p><em>(2) Misinformation Lab, School of Psychology, Deakin University</em></p> <p>Research suggests that conservatives and liberals respond to science information messages differently when the issue is politically-polarised. When presented with information about scientific consensus regarding climate change, denial may increase rather than decrease among conservatives (a phenomenon termed the worldview backfire effect). However, previous research has typically used consensus messages focusing on the existence of anthropogenic climate change. This study investigated the effects of expert consensus messages relating to the environmental and economic impacts of climate change on the dependent variables of mitigation and adaptation support, with trust in experts moderating these relationships. We randomly allocated self-identified conservatives (<em>n</em>=276) to one of three science information messages (economic impact, environmental impact, and antibiotic overuse). Findings suggest that 1) The worldview backfire effect may be overstated, and 2) shifting focus from the environmental impacts of climate change to its dire economic effects may increase conservatives’ willingness to support climate change mitigation policies.</p>
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