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Climate change is an issue that has been thematized by scientists before it became a concern for society. Climate scientists have defined and framed the problem and put it on the agenda of public and political discourse. National and international rules and regulations followed, and societal actors have increasingly been confronted with a variety of options. Decisions need to be made, about what to do, by whom, when, at what scale, and at what cost.
Important societal actors are politicians and policy-makers, the media, business organizations, scientific institutions, civil society organizations, and private citizens. All of them make climate-relevant decisions, either consciously and after due consideration of alternative options, or more tacitly by following routine practices, allegedly avoiding a decision. But following business as usual is also a decision, even if it is not presented as such. Decisions need justifications and are embedded in a web of expectations and social practices.
The Specialty section will address the many dimensions of this societal process of decision making by examining:
• The role of politics and policies, at the level of the local, the regional, the national, and the international;
• The role of media outlets and platforms that select and interpret climate-relevant news
• The role of business organizations which promote new products and processes, or defend their practices, in both cases trying to influence the regulatory environment and thus political decision-making;
• The role of scientific institutions and scientists which make decisions about research priorities, about how to communicate findings to the public, and about the question if specific recommendations should be advocated;
• The role of civil society organizations which are campaigning as social movements, consumer organizations, or community groups;
• The role of citizens who as consumers and voters have a direct impact on the development of climate-relevant options.
The causes and impacts of climate change, and the potential and possible solutions are reflected in multiple ways across different jurisdictions, cultures, and levels of decision-making. Decisions are influenced by norms, values, routines and social practices, not only by scientific information. Decisions are taken within existing structures which are enabling and constraining.
The aim of the Specialty section is to advance our understanding of the multi-faceted and interconnected nature of societal decision-making about climate change. It provides a platform for research publications that is broad enough to investigate cross-cutting themes that are crucial for the understanding of processes of decision-making, their context, and their interrelations.
We invite contributions from various social science disciplines that address the social, political, economic, cultural, and psychological aspects. We welcome articles based on empirical work, but also contributions of a more theoretical nature.
Indexed in: CLOCKSS, CrossRef, DOAJ, Google Scholar, OpenAIRE, Scopus
Climate and Decision Making welcomes submissions of the following article types: Case Report, Community Case Study, Correction, Curriculum, Instruction, and Pedagogy, Data Report, Editorial, General Commentary, Hypothesis and Theory, Methods, Mini Review, Opinion, Original Research, Perspective, Policy and Practice Reviews, Policy Brief, Review and Systematic Review.
All manuscripts must be submitted directly to the section Climate and Decision Making, where they are peer-reviewed by the Associate and Review Editors of the specialty section.
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