Future tense: how the language you speak influences your willingness to take climate action

Press/Media: Press / Media

Description

Our research shows that the way in which a language refers to the future has a bearing on environmental behaviour and policies.

A change from a present- to a future-tensed language results in a 20% decrease in an individual’s propensity to help safeguard the environment. Speakers of future-tensed languages are 24% less willing to pay higher taxes to fund environmental policies. These estimates are based on the World Values Surveys, a collection of nationally representative, individual-level surveys conducted in nearly 100 countries.

A similar effect can be seen at the national level. Countries that speak a present-tensed language generally have stricter climate change policies. 

Period8 Mar 2018

Media contributions

1

Media contributions

  • TitleFuture tense: how the language you speak influences your willingness to take climate action
    Degree of recognitionInternational
    Media name/outletThe Conversation
    Media typeWeb
    CountryAustralia
    Date8/03/18
    DescriptionOur research shows that the way in which a language refers to the future has a bearing on environmental behaviour and policies.

    A change from a present- to a future-tensed language results in a 20% decrease in an individual’s propensity to help safeguard the environment. Speakers of future-tensed languages are 24% less willing to pay higher taxes to fund environmental policies. These estimates are based on the World Values Surveys, a collection of nationally representative, individual-level surveys conducted in nearly 100 countries.

    A similar effect can be seen at the national level. Countries that speak a present-tensed language generally have stricter climate change policies.
    URLtheconversation.com/future-tense-how-the-language-you-speak-influences-your-willingness-to-take-climate-action-92587
    PersonsClas Weber, Astghik Mavisakalyan, Yashar Tarverdi

Keywords

  • Language
  • Future tense
  • Climate change
  • Environmental economics