PoLAR Research


The PoLAR Research project is focused on learning more about public understanding of and attitudes about polar climate change and how it relaters to their lives. Our research will also analyze the value of interactive, game-like approaches to climate change education, including how effective these tools are for encouraging systems thinking, problem solving, and cooperation.

We conduct a series of occasional polar knowledge and belief questions on broad statewide (New Hampshire) public opinion polls.  The surveys provide insights and baseline data on the state of general-public knowledge about polar regions, which could be useful to all the other PoLAR projects. Publications based on this work to date include:

Hamilton, L.C. 2014. “Do you trust scientists about the environment? News media sources and politics affect New Hampshire resident views.” Carsey Institute, University of New Hampshire. http://carsey.unh.edu/publications

Hamilton, L.C. and M. Lemcke-Stampone. 2013. “Arctic warming and your weather: Public belief in the connection.” International Journal of Climatology 34:1723–1728. doi: 10.1002/joc.3796

Hamilton, L.C. 2012. “Did the Arctic ice recover? Demographics of true and false climate facts.” Weather, Climate, and Society 4(4):236–249. doi: 10.1175/WCAS-D-12-00008.1


A set of new polar knowledge and belief questions were included in the fall 2014 New Hampshire survey, the results of which will be reported at the December 2014 meetings of the American Geophysical Union.  

Organization Name: 
Columbia University
University of New Hampshire
Teachers College
Goodman Research Group
Project Lead: 
Ben Orlove
Lawrence Hamilton
Joey Lee
Elizabeth Bachrach
Key Personnel: 
Tanya O'Garra