Does knowledge matter?

Just a short note: Daniel Sarewitz has a new opinion-piece, that is published in the early-online section of WIREs Climate Change. He asks, “Does climate change knowledge really matter?” (10.1002/wcc.126). While he ends the manuscript on the Hartwell Paper, the main point of interest is his account, that our improved knowledge on climate change in the last 20 years has lead to no political action, and that this is not due to public scepticism against the science but rather due to the biunique character of science and policy in the climate change debate.


“Decisive political action does not demand consensus
about the existence or nature of a problem. But
neither does broad agreement about the reality of a
problem mean that political processes can effectively
converge around a policy agenda that leads to effective

and this is, because in the climate change situation as it has been framed in the last 20 years

“distrusting the policy regime must
mean distrusting the science.”

Then, it is unimportant what we know, but it will always be judged against what it implies politically.


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