NO CAPS @ICWSM24

Dates

  • Paper submissions due: April 5, 2024
  • Final decision notification: April 19, 2024
  • Camera-ready submissions due: May 5, 2024
  • Workshop date: June 3, 2024

Topics

  • Social influence of climate change awareness.
  • Diffusion of social norms regarding mitigation of climate change.
  • Opinion change and opinion dynamics in climate change discussions.
  • Mixed-methods approaches (e.g., from digital humanities, ethnography, psychology) to study online discourse regarding climate change.
  • Analysis of social networks and communities of climate activism or climate skeptics.
  • Polarity, sentiment, and opinion mining in the context of climate change.
  • Impact of real-world phenomena on climate change awareness and activism.
  • Governmental policies on climate and their representation on social media.
  • Public pressure dynamics on social media for climate action.
  • Game-theoretical foundations for incentivizing climate action.
  • Polarization, cooperation, consensus and echo chambers in climate change discussions on social media.
  • AI tools for analyzing social and traditional media’s role in climate change perception.

Program

The workshop will be in the afternoon.

  • Opening remarks.
  • Keynotes.
  • Brainstorming for the definition of a research agenda.
  • Coffee break.
  • Paper presentations.
  • Data analysis activity (TBA) and white paper definition.

Keynotes

Climate Journalism in Times of Democratic Crisis

Hanna E. Morris

In this talk, Dr. Hanna E. Morris (Assistant Professor, University of Toronto) will explore the climate-media-democracy nexus and examine the challenges that climate journalists face during moments of social unease. Drawing upon the main arguments developed in her forthcoming book entitled Apocalyptic Authoritarianism: Climate Crisis, Media, and Power (Oxford University Press), she will specifically focus on U.S. contexts and describe how national anxieties following the 2016 presidential election of Donald Trump have shaped and continue to shape American journalistic and political interpretations of the climate crisis in ways that severely limit how the crisis has come to be known, imagined, and contended with. In addition to interrogating the implications of these limitations, possible pathways forward for more robust forms of climate journalism will also be explored in this talk.

Dr. Hanna E. Morris is an Assistant Professor of Climate Change Communication at the School of the Environment at the University of Toronto. She is also the co-chair of the Critical Studies of Climate Media, Discourse, and Power Working Group a part of Brown University’s Climate Social Science Network (CSSN) and a member of the Board of Directors for the International Environmental Communication Association (IECA). Her forthcoming book is entitled Apocalyptic Authoritarianism: Climate Crisis, Media, and Power (Oxford University Press) and explores how U.S. journalists are covering the mounting threats of the climate crisis today. Her research and writing have been published in various academic journals and popular media outlets including Journal of Language and Politics, Journal of Environmental Media, Environmental Communication, Places Journal, Media Theory, Politique Américaine, Reading the Pictures, and Earth Island Journal. She also co-edited the book entitled Climate Change and Journalism: Negotiating Rifts of Time (Routledge, 2021). Her scholarship has been recognized by the Connaught New Researcher Award from the University of Toronto, Stuart Hall Award from the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR), New Directions for Climate Communication Research Fellowship from the International Environmental Communication Association (IECA) and International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR), and Top Paper Awards from the International Communication Association (ICA) and Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences (AESS).

Submit

Instructions

We welcome both 2-page abstracts, as well as research papers. Abstracts are ideal for position papers or discussion papers of previously published work. Research papers must contain original work, including novel technical contributions, demos, datasets, or early-stage research with experimental and preliminary results. The accepted research papers (not the 2-page abstracts) will be published in the ICWSM Workshop Proceedings (AAAI Press).

All papers must be submitted as high-resolution PDF files, formatted in AAAI two-column, camera-ready style, for US Letter (8.5" x 11") paper, in English. Please reference the ICWSM 2024 Submission Guidelines for all information, but authors do not need to compile the ethics checklist required for submissions to the main research track of ICWSM. Research papers are recommended to be 4 pages long, and must be at most 11 pages long, including only the main text and the references. No source files (Word or LaTeX) are required at the time of submission for review; only the PDF file is permitted. The copyright slug may be omitted in the initial submission phase.

Anonymity: The review is double-blind. Therefore, please anonymize your submission: do not put the author names or affiliations at the start of the paper, and do not include funding or other acknowledgments in papers submitted for review.

Papers should be submitted here:

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Call for Papers

The most defining task for humankind in the 21st century is to address the challenge of rapid climate change through mass collective action. As the window of opportunity for action to curb greenhouse gas emissions grows narrower, we need a rapid and widespread societal change in favor of carbon-neutral practices. Achieving such change demands a dual approach: on one hand, increasing public pressure on the largest emissions producers, and on the other instigating a fundamental shift in lifestyle choices. In fact, while large economic actors hold the key to profound changes, reducing the consumption of meat in the richest countries and switching out motorized transportation is also a fundamental, necessary step.

When discussing climate action, there is often debate on whether these two goals are in conflict, or if they reinforce each other, with collective action mobilizing the public opinion also fostering sustainable lifestyle choices. At the core, climate action embodies a social dilemma where individual benefits clash with collective interests, necessitating concerted efforts to outweigh personal costs with shared gains. Centralized decision-making by governments has proven so far to be insufficient to solve such dilemmas, as it struggles with the conflicting incentives that drive different parts of society. For example, governmental policies and international summits aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions have systematically failed to meet the necessary targets to avert the most catastrophic consequences of atmospheric warming.

To this day, we lack solutions that can be implemented on a global scale in a very short time, unfold spontaneously without the intervention of a central global authority, and overcome the individual incentive to defect. At the same time, the pressure from the general public on central authorities is still not compelling enough to overcome particular interests. Fortunately, the Social Web is an ideal platform to support this type of social change. It is the largest and most pervasive network for the diffusion of culture, it allows rapid participation in the public debate at low cost, and it has proven to be a fertile ground for collective action even in the absence of material rewards. Despite this, the key factors that can enable collective climate action in online communities are still largely unknown. Moreover, there is little experimental evidence to inform how to build online communities that facilitate cooperative action, how different kinds of climate action interact, and which types of communication are more effective. Ultimately, climate action demands urgent answers to many open social questions.

Goals

The Computational Social Science (CSS) community has approached the study of climate action from multiple angles, including characterizing online activist movements, studying mechanisms of incentives based on game-theoretical foundations, investigating the features associated with either polarization or cooperation and developing AI tools to operationalize social science theories concerning collective action. Yet, these works are diluted in the larger CSS community, and the interest group on climate action lacks a forum where to discuss, grow, and define a common strategy for planning and identifying research challenges and priorities.

The goal of this workshop is therefore to provide the CSS community with a venue to discuss and elaborate a common research agenda on the topic of climate action in the public sphere. Such an agenda should identify the most essential research angles around the general question of what drives opinion change and collective action on climate change—with a special emphasis on the social Web. In particular, our first aim is to outline a precise set of research questions that could improve our understanding of the phenomenon, and thus inform decision-makers as well as the general public. Secondly, we will identify and consolidate conceptual tools from different areas—computational social science, climate science, and social psychology—that the community agrees should drive the research on this phenomenon. Inside this conceptual toolbox, we aim in particular at defining a taxonomy of the opinions of citizens and social media users on climate change (beyond the simplistic binary dichotomy) that could inform further research. To do so, we will collaboratively analyze a data set collected from Reddit around the topic of climate change. As a final product of the workshop, we aim to draft a collective white paper published on arXiv, authored by all the participants of the workshop who wish to contribute, and led by the organizers of the workshop. The white paper will summarize the outcome of the workshop, and provide an initial reference point for the CSS community on this complex issue.

Audience

The workshop is intended for researchers from different fields interested in analyzing climate change discourse on social and traditional media. Firstly, the workshop wants to provide a venue for computational social scientists interested in the topic. At the same time, it will promote an interdisciplinary approach, favoring the inclusion of other fields such as digital humanities, political science, or game theory, to provide a comprehensive exploration of the factors shaping climate change narratives in the public sphere. Additionally, it caters to professionals engaged in media studies, journalism, and communication, as well as policy-makers, able to gain insights into the field. The workshop will foster a collaborative environment where expertise from various disciplines converges to advance our understanding of the complex dynamics between media, opinions, and climate change discourse.

Organizers

Corrado Monti

Corrado Monti

CENTAI
Turin, Italy
Gianmarco De Francisci Morales

Gianmarco
De Francisci Morales

CENTAI
Turin, Italy
Luca Maria Aiello

Luca Maria Aiello

ITU Copenhagen, Denmark

Program Committee

  • Max Falkenberg, City, University of London
  • Kyriaki Kalimeri, ISI Foundation
  • Jacopo Lenti, Sapienza University, CENTAI
  • Yelena Mejova, ISI Foundation
  • Arianna Pera, IT University of Copenhagen
  • Francesco Pierri, Politecnico di Milano
  • Davide Vega, Uppsala University

Contacts

Write us at nocaps@googlegroups.com.