Emerging Normative Change in Response to Climate Change?

8 Pages Posted: 15 May 2020 Last revised: 15 May 2021

Date Written: May 14, 2021


Meeting the UN Paris Agreement will require unprecedented social change that goes hand in hand with technological and economic innovations. Research suggests that normative change, the change in what is perceived as morally acceptable, can drive wider large-scale social change, i.e., change in legislation, policy and behavior. In this paper we explore the normative narrative of some of the largest, recent transnational climate protest movements, Extinction Rebellion and Fridays for Future. Specifically, we analyze computationally a large data set of tweets in the context of these protest movements. Based on this analysis we propose that we are at the start of a normative change. And this normative change has the potential to push societies around the world out of their "business as usual" inertia into a new stable post carbon state.

Keywords: Climate Change, Normative Change, Social Change, Climate Protest Movement, Social Tipping Dynamics

Suggested Citation

Spaiser, Viktoria and Stefan, Cristina, Emerging Normative Change in Response to Climate Change? (May 14, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3581404 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3581404

Viktoria Spaiser (Contact Author)

University of Leeds ( email )

Social Science Building
Woodhouse Lane
Leeds, LS2 9JT
United Kingdom
0044 7470 122518 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.viktoriaspaiser.com

Cristina Stefan

University of Leeds

Leeds, LS2 9JT
United Kingdom

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