Chapter 7: Climate change knowledge, meta-knowledge and beliefs
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It is a long-standing debate whether in heavily politicized domains such as climate change, knowledge can predict beliefs. In this chapter we summarize current insights into climate change knowledge and beliefs, including the predictors and nature of beliefs, and whether knowledge can predict these beliefs. We review the extent of knowledge about climate change, and the nature of climate change beliefs. Factors that influence the knowledge-belief relationship include political attitude, worldviews and values, but also meta-knowledge, confidence in own knowledge. We review evidence demonstrating the relevance of confidence as an important means to shield the public from misinformation about climate change; as a desirable outcome with respect to communicated climate science; and as a predictor of climate change beliefs. Fully understanding the knowledge-belief relationship is critical for enhancing climate action.

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