March 20, 2007 | Graham

What would a deliberative poll show on Greenhouse?

Two weeks ago a deliberative poll held in Canberra persuaded a significant number of participants to soften their attitudes towards muslims – 14 percent, according to Mike Steketee in The Australian.
Jennifer Marohasy draws attention to a slightly different deliberation in New York. Two teams debated the topic “Global Warming is not a crisis” and 16 percent changed their minds in response. Before the debate, only 30 percent believed that it was not a crisis. Afterwards that figure was 46 percent, with 42 percent (down from 57 percent) who thought it was.
Will the results of this second poll be as warmly welcomed as the results of the first?
I’m generally interested in deliberative polling, although skeptical of its usefulness as a tool for guiding democratic elections. They do their best to select a representative sample of Australians to participate, but once you’ve participated you’re no longer representative – you’re an expert – so your views no longer give an accurate picture of what Australians think. And as deliberative polls can’t be scaled up to include the whole population there’s no chance of conducting a nationwide education program to mimic the same results.
That’s assuming that the poll is fairly conducted. I gather Janet Albrechtsen (who was a panellist for the poll) thought that the process was skewed, and I came across this interesting critique from Jim Ball who is 2GB’s resident insomniac.

Posted by Graham at 10:44 am | Comments (1) |
Filed under: Environment

1 Comment

  1. It would be great to see a debate organised by our ABC radio/TV on global warming perhaps involving some Australian experts and/or celebrities including Bob Carter and Tim Flannery.
    A group in Tassie did organise a debate that was to include Carter and Flannery late last year, but I think Flannery pulled out at the last minute.

    Comment by Jennifer — March 20, 2007 @ 4:04 pm

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