Kim Doell from the Faculty of Psychology was co-leading one of the largest experiments in the Psychology of Climate Change, together with Madalina Vlasceanu and Jay J. Van Bavel.

Description: Talking to over 59 000 participants from 63 different countries, Kim and her co-investigators tried to develop a better understanding on what humans think about climate change and possible ways to combat it. They developed 11 behavioral interventions and investigated how they impacted belief in climate change, support for climate change mitigation policies, willingness to share information on social media, and effortful behavior. Surprisingly to the investigators, an average of 86% of the participants beliefs in climate change, and support for climate change sat at 73%. 50% of participants were willing to participate in effortful behavior in order to work against climate change. The results of the study also further highlighted the need to reduce psychological distance to the consequences of climate change, and target interventions to specific populations. What may work in one country could backfire in a different one. Based on their data, the researchers designed a climate intervention app that empowers its’ users to make more environmentally conscious decisions at governmental, community, and household levels. The app is designed to cater to specific needs of different populations by featuring an option to look for interventions that work for people similar to oneself.

ECH communication coordinator Nora Gau recently talked to Kim about her exciting project, read the full interview here. The study’s article offers further insight into the results and methods.

Collaborators: 63 different countries, see full list here

Duration: 2 years (01.12.2021 – 30.11.2023)