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CSTPR Briefing
The Center for Science and Technology Policy Research

Center for Science and Technology Policy Research
Briefing #28, 27 January 2015

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The Rightful Place of Science: Disasters and Climate Change

The Rightful Place of Science: Disasters and Climate Change

In recent years the media, politicians, and activists have popularized the notion that climate change has made disasters worse. But what does the science actually say? Roger Pielke, Jr. takes a close look at the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the underlying scientific research, and the data to give you the latest science on disasters and climate change. What he finds may surprise you and raise questions about the role of science in political debates. Read more ...

"with all the chaff floating around this subject, Pielke's work is better than most at approaching it with a clear head" Sean Sublette, Chief Meteorologist, ABC 13 News, Lynchburg, VA

"a welcome beacon of light on the science of climate change and extreme weather events" Dr. Peter J. Webster, Former President, Atmospheric Section: American Geophysical Union and Professor, School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia Institute of Technology

Radio Appearance by Ben Hale on Ebola Epidemic: What We Know, The Politics and Treatment
Ebola Epidemic: What We Know, The Politics and Treatment Ben Hale appeared on NPR's Mark Steiner Show in October talking about health and political issues surrounding Ebola, treatment, public health implications, and Ebola in the United States. The show joined Dr. Lawrence Brown, activist, public health consultant, and Assistant Professor of Public Health in the School of Community Health and Policy at Morgan State University; Dr. Benjamin Hale, writer for Slate, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Environmental Studies at the University of Colorado-Boulder, Vice President of the International Society of Environmental Ethics and co-Editor of the journal Ethics, Policy & Environment; and Emira Woods, Director of Social Impact at Thoughtworks, a software consulting firm dedicated to economic and social justice, and Associate Fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies. Listen to the program ...
NAS Talk by Roger Pielke, Jr. on the Roles of Scientists in Policy and Politics
Roger Pielke, Jr. In January 2015, Roger Pielke, Jr. gave a talk entitled "The Roles of Scientists in Policy and Politics" at a National Academy of Sciences workshop on "When Science and Citizens Connect: Public Engagement on Genetically Modified Organisms". Roger's talk is available to watch online.
New CSTPR Project: Balancing Severe Decision Conflicts under Climate Extremes in Water Resource Management
New CSTPR Project: Balancing Severe Decision Conflicts under Climate Extremes in Water Resource Management Over the past several years there have been increasing calls for decision support tools in the area of climate and acknowledgement that changing extremes add to an already challenging decision environment for water managers. Recurring droughts, flood events, and concerns over extreme events in the future have created a strong interest among water managers in the Front Range of Colorado about how to plan in the face of these extremes. Traditional methods of identifying alternatives for water supply management may not fully capture the range of existing preferred alternatives, meaning that utilities may miss some of the solutions that appropriately balance among tradeoffs. In this project we seek to co-produce and test a newly developed multi-objective decision tool as a Testbed to aid this process, balancing conflicting management objectives for water planning under climate extremes and determining how policy alternatives perform under severe climate uncertainty. By combining innovative search algorithms, simulation models, and interactive visualizations, the proposed decision tool helps generate and evaluate new alternatives, as well as promotes managers’ learning about the tradeoffs and vulnerabilities of their systems. Read more...
CU Political Scientist Steve Vanderheiden Joins CSTPR Faculty
Steve Vanderheiden The Center for Science and Technology Policy Research is pleased to welcome Steve Vanderheiden as a new faculty member. Currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science here at the University of Colorado, Boulder and a Professorial Fellow with the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics (CAPPE) in Canberra, Australia, Vanderheiden is very excited to join CSTPR. "Although I have known and worked with most of its faculty over the past few years through our affiliations with ENVS, I have not played any kind of role in the Center during that time," Vanderheiden states. "Given my relevant research interests, I'm keen to contribute." Read more ...

Sample of Recent Publications

Provide the power necessary to boost productivity and raise living standards
Bazilian, M. and R. A. Pielke, Jr. (2013).
Making Energy Access Meaningful (full version with figures). Issues in Science and Technology Summer 74-79.

Understanding celebrity climate contrarians as a vehicle for influence
Boykoff, M. T. and S. K. Olson (2013).
‘Wise Contrarians’: A Keystone Species in Contemporary Climate Science, Politics and Policy. Celebrity Studies 4 (3) 276-291, doi: 10.1080/19392397.2013.831618.

Exploring mechanisms in response to the concerns of geoengineering research
Dilling, L. and R. Hauser (2013).
Governing Geoengineering Research: Why, When and How?. Climatic Change, doi: 10.1007/s10584-013-0835-z.

Climate justice, conservation through commodification, and precautionary principle
Hale, B. and A. Light, eds. (2013).
Ethics, Policy & Environment, Volume 16, Issue 3. This issue includes a Target article by Mark Sagoff, with commentaries from Rachel Fredericks, Carl Safina, Simon James and others, as well as feature articles on climate justice, conservation through commodification, and precautionary principle.

Discussing the role of experts in politics
Linnér, B. and R. A. Pielke, Jr., 2013.
More Authoritarian Politics is Not the Solution to Climate Change (english version). Dagens Nyheter, September 27.

Analyzing the relationship between the evidence, politics and institutions of scientific advice
Pielke, R. A. Jr. (2013).
After Haiyan: How to Act on Scientific Advice That’s Politically Inconvenient?. The Guardian, Nov. 19.

Japan has once again implemented “mamizu” policies
Pielke, R.A., Jr. (2013).
Behind Japan’s Climate Fail: Nuclear Energy and Global Warming Commitments. The Breakthrough Institute Blog, November 21.

All articles are available via download from our website or can be requested by email.

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