Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Great Story on Denial Coming Out In New Scientist Magazine

Anyone involved in dealing with change, changing public opinion or dealing with community activist groups should read this article.

Highlights according to the Magazine include:

"SPECIAL REPORT: STATE OF DENIAL

Why do so many people refuse to accept what the evidence tells them? Denial is a phenomenon that spreads rapidly and encompasses any number of issues. New Scientist’s special report explores the causes and characteristics of denial and ways to challenge the denialist movement.

· I am a sceptic, but I am no denier: What is denial and how is it different from scepticism?

· Whose conspiracy?: All denial is essentially the same, regardless of whether it’s about tobacco, AIDS, climate change or vaccines.

· Giving life to a lie: What makes people accept a lie as truth?"

The three takeaways for me:

1. Denial is often from an ideological or religious point of view
2. The Internet has allowed denialist ideas to be given visibility and credibility
3. Professionals in PR, marketing, persuasion and influence should be studying this areas because it gives many insights into managing stakeholder expectations.

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