21 July 2009

This Doesn't Jibe With My Experience

Ken Caldeira of Stanford University explains how scientists who show that common wisdom is flawed receive a welcome, even celebrated, reception in the scientific community:
The reality of science is that a scientific career is made by showing that all the people around you believe something that’s not true. If a scientist could provide evidence that the climate theory is incorrect and that global warming is not a product of human activities, he or she would be held up as the Darwin or the Einstein of climate science. We’re highly incentivized to show that all our colleagues are wrong. If we could come up with good evidence that they’re wrong, we would be out there publishing it.
My experience publishing peer-reviewed work that has yet to show evidence of a greenhouse gas signal in the disaster loss record has yet to celebrated by the climate science community, but if Caldeira's views of the dynamics of the scientific community are correct, then it is only a matter of time;-)