Tag Archives: Naomi Oreskes

Should we trust science? – Wellington talk

Oreskes

Naomi Oreskes is Professor of the History of Science and Affiliated Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Harvard University, and an internationally renowned geologist, science historian, and author.

If you are in Wellington next Tuesday this should be an interesting talk. I would certainly be in the audience if I was able.

Should we trust science?

Perspectives from the history and philosophy of science

Naomi Oreskes

Professor of History of Science at Harvard University.

6pm Tuesday 24 November 2015
Paramount Theatre, 25 Courtenay Place, Wellington

In this talk Professor Naomi Oreskes offers perspectives from the history and philosophy of science, argues that we should trust science and explains why.

Many readers will know Professor Oreskes as one of the authors, together with Eric M. Conway, of 
Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming
.
I highly recommend this excellent book.

These two authors have also written a science-based book of fiction The Collapse of Western Civilization: A View from the Future. I haven’t read it yet, but it’s certainly on my list (and in my eReader).

The Royal Society of NZ has organised the event – for more information see Should we trust science? « At Six « Events « Royal Society of New Zealand.

For those of us who can’t make Professor Oreskes talk there is a video of a similar talk she gave at Virginia Tech recently at Distinguished Lecture 2015: Dr. Naomi Oreskes, Harvard University

About Naomi Oreskes

Naomi Oreskes is Professor of the History of Science and Affiliated Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Harvard University, and an internationally renowned geologist, science historian, and author.

Oreskes is the author of many scholarly and popular books and articles on the history of earth and environmental science. She has lectured widely and won numerous prizes, including the 2009 Francis Bacon Medal for outstanding scholarship in the history of science and technology, the 2011 Climate Change Communicator of the Year, and the 2014 American Geophysical Union Presidential Citation for Science and Society.

For the past decade, Oreskes has been primarily interested in the science and politics of anthropogenic climate change. Her 2010 book, Merchants of Doubt, How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco to Global Warming, co-authored with Erik M. Conway, was shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and won the Watson-Davis Prize from the History of Science Society. The film version was released in late 2014.

Oreskes’s current research projects include completion of a scholarly book on the history of Cold War oceanography.

Naomi Oreskes is brought to New Zealand by History of Science 2015 conference in partnership with the Royal Society of New Zealand.

Similar articles

Science denial is a diversion from the real problems

Here’s a short but informative discussion between Naomi Oreskes and Australian politician Nick Minchin. He is known for his denial of human inputs to climate change and for attacking the science. Oreskes suggests to him that his reasons for denial are not scientific. That he should accept the science and get on a deal with the political and financial issues which really motivate him.

This is an extract from the documentary “I Can Change Your Mind About..Climate.” You an watch the film on line.

This reminds me of the comment made by a well-known US climate change denier, Senator James Inhofe (R-OK). When debating his position, and his attacks on science, with a TV interviewer he made this remarkable admission:

I was actually on your side of this issue when I was chairing that committee and I first heard about this. I thought it must be true until I found out what it cost.”

In short, learning about the (supposed) high cost of the solution is what turned him from a believer in climate science to a denier.

This is something which I seem to have to learn again and again in my debates with those attacking the science of climate change and climate scientists. Although they attack the science their real motivating beliefs are political and financial.

It’s an interesting psychological phenomenon, and an unpleasant political one seeing they are needlessly  badmouthing innocent and honest scientists.

Naomi Oreskes has often lectured and written on  science denial. Her book Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming is well worth reading.

I also recommend a recent interview with her on Point Of Inquiry: Naomi Oreskes – Neoliberalism and the Denial of Global Warming

Thanks to: Deniers in Denial about Why they Deny.

See also: Q&A Climate Debate the ABC programme screened after the above documentary.

Climate change lectures in Auckland

Two well-known personalities in the world of climate change science are in Auckland this month. Naomi Oreskes, Co-author of Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming.

And James Hansen Author of Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity.

Oreskes will give the Michael King Memorial Lecture at the 2011 Auckland Readers and Writers Festival on May 14.

THE MICHAEL KING MEMORIAL LECTURE

Naomi Oreskes

“Doubt is our product,” ran the infamous memo written by one tobacco industry executive in 1969, “since it is the best means of competing with the ‘body of fact’ that exists in the minds of the general public.” There’s no denying “doubt” is crucial to science and drives it forward, but it also makes science, and scientists, vulnerable to misrepresentation. Naomi Oreskes co-wrote Merchants of Doubt with Erik Conway: an important and absorbing history of a group of high-level US scientists and advisers with deep connections in politics and industry. The same individuals surface repeatedly: claiming that the science of global warming is “not settled”, denying the truth of studies linking smoking to lung cancer, coal smoke to acid rain, and CFCs to the ozone hole. We are honoured to have Naomi Oreskes give the Michael King Memorial Lecture, with an introduction by the Science Editor of the New York Times Barbara Strauch.

Event Details

Date: 14 May

Time: 01:00 p.m. – 02:00 p.m.

Venue: ASB THEATRE, AOTEA CENTRE

Category: SCIENCE AND THE ENVIRONMENT

via 28 NAOMI ORESKES AND THE MERCHANTS OF DOUBT – Auckland Writers & Readers Festival.

See Also: An anatomy of denial

James Hansen tours New Zealand

James Hansen (Credit: Guardian)

James Hansen is touring New Zealand this month, giving a public lecture entitled “Climate Change: a scientific, moral and legal issue” in Auckland, Palmerston North, Wellington, Dunedin, Gore and Christchurch.

Coal and lignite will be a major focus of his visit, and he’ll be participating in a symposium on “the future of coal” in Wellington on May 17th.

Hansen’s tour is being sponsored by a number of groups, including 350.org, Greenpeace, Organic Systems NZ, Oxfam, The Pure Advantage, the Institute of Policy Studies, and a number of interested academics and individuals.

Auckland Public Talk: “Climate Change: a scientific, moral and legal issue”

When: Thu 12 May, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

Where:  University of Auckland School of Business, 12 Grafton Rd, Grafton Show map

Tickets: Free Admission

Website: www.facebook.com/#! … our?sk=info