The mindboggling complexity of the climate change dialectic can be a nightmare to navigate. So it’s a very good thing that the clever folks at Debategraph have decided to harness the awesome power of the interweb 2.0 to carefully map all of these interacting and overlapping arguments and issues in a huge collaborative and ultimately comprehensive Wiki project.

Behold! The Debategraph Climate Change Map:

What in the world am I looking at here?

This is an amazing example of how we can use the potential of the internet to further human understanding. Just click on the middle of a blobby bit  to unpack the issues to which it refers. The map will change and grow as more people contribute new knowledge and arguments, and you can sign up to add your own too.

Wow. I still don’t get it.

The map is part of a wider online collective intelligence project, ESSENCE 2009 – being run in conjunction with the Open University and MIT and supported by the World Federation of UN Associations – that is building towards the United Nation’s Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December 2009.

The map is still in the early stages of development; however, it has already benefited from significant input from, among others, Mark Klein at the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence, and the excellent debates at the IQ2 Green Festival on Climate Change held at the Royal Geographical Society at the end of January 2009.

The whole structure of the map is like a wiki – every aspect is mutable, provisional, and open to further refinement – and anyone can add new issues, positions, arguments, events and evidence to the map.

The aim is to weave together the key scientific and political arguments – from all perspectives on the subject – into a rich, transparent structure that anyone can explore and gain a relatively deep understanding of the complex considerations and choices quickly; confident in the knowledge that, as the map matures, all views are being represented fairly, succinctly and in full.

So where you spot gaps, or incorrect and/or unchallenged arguments on the map, please help us to fill the gaps and correct and challenge the arguments.

Each element on the map can be cross-related to any other element on the map; so any point can be seen in the context of any other point. And each element is described not only via the heading and roll-over text shown in the visualization above, but also via an expanded text that can be up to 50,000 characters and include images and other media.

You can begin to access and explore this deeper content via the buttons displayed below the graph. Get exploring...

Bookmark and Share
Support Not Stupid  |  Contact Us  |  Not Stupid 2009