The authors of this brief conduct the first comparative analysis of the polar questions that were part of the National Opinion Research Center's 2006 and 2010 General Social Survey. Developed by scientists at the National Science Foundation's Office of Polar Programs, these questions covered topics such as climate change, melting ice and rising sea levels, and species extinction. The authors report that the public's knowledge about the north and south polar regions significantly improved between 2006 and 2010--before and after the International Polar Year. In addition, respondents who know more about science in general, and polar facts specifically, tend to be more concerned about polar changes. More knowledgeable respondents also tend to favor reserving the Antarctic for science, rather than opening it for commercial development.
National Issue Brief No. 42
Durham, N.H. : Carsey Institute, University of New Hampshire
Hamilton, Lawrence C.; Cutler, Matthew J.; and Schaefer, Andrew, "Public knowledge about polar regions increases while concerns remain unchanged" (2012). The Carsey School of Public Policy at the Scholars' Repository. 157.
Copyright 2012. The Carsey Institute. These materials may be used for the purposes of research, teaching, and private study. For all other uses, contact the copyright holder.