Sunday, May 6, 2012

Grundmann on ClimateGate

Reiner Grundmann has now published two articles on "ClimateGate". The first is

‘Climategate’’ and The Scientific Ethos.
It was published on-line on 23 April 2012 in Science Technology Human Values, and the full article is available here. Before acceptance for publication, the article met lots of flak.

The abstract reads:
In late 2009, e-mails from a server at the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia were released that showed some climate scientists in an unfavorable light. Soon this scandal was known as ‘‘Climategate’’ and a highly charged debate started to rage on blogs and in the mass media. Much of the debate has been about the question whether anthropogenic global warming was undermined by the revelations. But ethical issues, too, became part and parcel of the debate. This article aims to contribute to this debate, assessing the e-mail affair in the light of two normative analyses of science, one proposed by Robert Merton (and developed further by some of his followers), the second by a recent suggestion to use the concept of honest brokering in science policy interactions. On the basis of these analyses, different aspects of malpractice will be discussed and possible solutions will be suggested.

The second  paper is the "opinion" article in WIRES Climate Change with the title

"The legacy of climategate: revitalizing or undermining climate science and policy?"
(Full article here; WIREs Clim Change 2012. doi: 10.1002/wcc.166)

The abstract reads:
The release of emails from a server at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) in November 2009 and the following climategate controversy have become a topic for interpretation in the social sciences. This article picks out some of the most visible social science comments on the affair for discussion. These comments are compared to an account of what can be seen as problematic practices by climate scientists. There is general agreement in these comments that climate science needs more openness and transparency. But when evaluating climategate a variety of responses is seen, ranging from the apologetic to the highly critical, even condemning the practices in question. It is argued that reluctance to critically examine the climategate affair, including suspect practices of scientists, has to do with the nature of the debate which is highly politicized. A call is made for more reflection on this case which should not be closed off because of political expediency.

47 comments:

Anonymous said...

Reiner might want to read this:
http://deepclimate.org/2009/12/11/mcintyre-provides-fodder-for-skeptics/

Combined with a few other questionable interpretations (such as the one in which Reiner cites the Douglass letter in American Thinker, but ignores the response on Realclimate by Santer, showing the Douglass letter to contain numerous false allegations), one might even call the article deliberately biased (clearly, no attempt was made to look for rebuttals of the various claims), and as such in itself an example of misconduct.

Bam

Anonymous said...

Ich bin bei Durchsicht des zweiten Beitrags auf folgende Schlüsselstelle gestoßen:

In my view climategate reveals problematic practices in three respects: the representation of temperature reconstructions, the handling of freedom of information(FOI)requests,and the reviewprocess for academic journals and the IPCC

An dieser Stelle sollte meines Erachtens die Frage der Repräsentativität der Emails für die Klimaforschung diskutiert werden.

Der Hacker hat mit hoher Wahrscheinlichkeit Emails mit Hilfe einer Suchabfrage abgegriffen, die bestimmte Personen bzw. bestimmte Themen beinhalteten. Von diesen Mails wurde nur ein kleiner Teil - ebenfalls selektiert? - an die Öffentlichkeit weitergeben (s. climategate 2).

Es stellt sich daher schon die Frage, ob die Schlussfolgerungen Herrn Grundmanns über diesen Personenkreis hinaus verallgemeinert werden können.

Aber auch inhaltlich kann ich die genannten Punkte nicht vollständig nachvollziehen:
Ok, Phil Jones hat FOIA-Anfragen nicht korrekt behandelt, keine Frage.

Aber welche Darstellungen von Temperaturrekonstruktionen sollen fragwürdig oder bedenklich gewesen sein? Sicherlich keine aus dem IPCC-Bericht. Ich erinnere mich vage an eine andere suboptimale Darstellung (WMO?), aber ob diese die öffentliche Klimadebatte überhaupt berührt hat?

Die Kritik am Peerreview-Prozess kann ich ebenfalls nicht teilen. Wurde ein Paper aus dem IPCC-Bericht wegen mangelnder Qualität oder wegen unliebsamer Personen/Thesen herausgehalten? Der erste Fall wäre genau das, was funktionierendes Peer Review leisten soll. Ob Herr Grundmann die Qualität des infrage stehenden papers richtig eingeschätzt hat?


Aber selbst, wenn es so wäre:
Mein Hauptproblem ist, dass ich Zweifel habe, ob die Emails wirklich einen repräsentativen Querschnitt wiedergeben, welcher generalisierende Schlüsse erlauben würde. Falls das richtig ist, wäre Herr Grundmann den Absichten des Hackers auf den Leim gegangen.

Andreas

eduardo said...

@ 4

Andreas,

einige Aspekte lassen sich nicht veralgemeinern, weil diese Gruppe von Wissenschatller (CRU/Mann) u.w.s zu der Zeit so eine dominierende Position bei der Begutachtung von Manuskripten hatten, dass es es für andere Wissenschaftler unmöglich war, sich so zu verhalten. Mann konnte damals fast sicher sein, dass jedes Manuskript ueber das Klima des letzten Millenniums in jedem der renomierten Journals - nicht nur Nature oder Science, sondern auch GRL, Journla of Climate, Climate Dynamics us.w., zur Begutachtung bei CRU und oder Mann landen wuerde. In diesem Sinne war es doch einzigartig.

ich erinnere mich noch ein ein Gutachten von einem unseres manuskriotes, das so anfing:
'as Mike has already said..'

Das hiess, dass die Gutacher nicht nur sich austauschten bei der Verfassung der Gutachtern, sondern sie gaben sich nicht mal die Mühe, es zu verbergen.

This being said....

die Lage ist nun völlig anders. Es ist viel schwieriger als Gatekeeper zu agieren. ich kann es nicht beweisen, aber ich denke, das ist - wenn man so will- eine positive Nebenwirkung von Climategate gewesen. Die Editoren sind wachsamer geworden. Als Beispiel, die Anzahl der Anfragen zu Begutachtung von Manuskripten hat sich bei mir verzehnfacht seit Climategate

Anonymous said...

@ Eduardo

'as Mike has already said..'

You made my day, Eduardo, der ist wirklich gut ;-)

Man sollte aber fairerweise erwähnen, dass es sich dann wohl um das Gebiet von Temperaturrekonstruktionen gehandelt hat, ein relativ junges Gebiet, wo es anfangs auch nicht sonderlich viele Koryphäen gab. Ich zweifle immer noch an, ob dies repräsentativ für die gesamte Klimaforschung ist.

Sie schildern ihren Eindruck, dass sich das Peerreview verbessert hat. Ich möchte ergänzen, dass ich den Eindruck habe, dass das IPCC seit 2009 sehr um Qualtitätssteigerung bemüht, dass sich die Klimadebatte entspannt hat und Wissenschaftler zuletzt sehr, sehr vorsichtig geworden sind, was alarmistische öffentliche Äußerungen angeht.

Ich wage mal eine ganz kühne These:

Climategate hat der Klimadebatte kurzfristig geschadet, nun überwiegen aber schon die positiven Effekte.

Die Debatte ist ruhiger und seriöser geworden. Möglicherweise haben die Tricks und Verzerrungen bei climategate1 sogar eher die Glaubwürdigkeit der skeptischen Seite beschädigt.

Aber vielleicht irre ich und es hat gar nichts mit climategate zu tun, sondern damit, dass seit Kopenhagen und in der Folge niemand mehr einen weltweiten Klimavertrag in den nächsten Jahren für realisierbar hält. Das entspannt, so let's do some science again.

PS:
Haben Sie zufälligerweise das neue Buch von Mann gelesen? Das Paper von Ihnen und von Storch wird darin auch erwähnt, mich würde interessieren, ob Manns Darstellung objektiv und korrekt ist, ich selbst kann es nicht beurteilen. Wäre für mich so eine Art Lackmustest dafür, ob Manns Buch stark subjektiv geprägt ist oder er sich um Objektivität bemüht.

Herzliche Grüße
Andreas

eduardo said...

@5

Andreas,

'es anfangs auch nicht sonderlich viele Koryphäen gab. Ich zweifle immer noch an, ob dies repräsentativ für die gesamte Klimaforschung ist.'

Das ist sicherlich richtig. Es gab und es gibt immer noch nicht viele Forscher in diesem Arbeitsgebiet. Trotzdem denke ich, dass man nicht unbedingt die kritischen Papers von Kollegen abwürgen muss. Das Problem lag daran, dass schon sehr früh die Gleichung Hockey-stick=Klimawandel hochgehalten würde, und dadurch wurde jedes Manuskript. das den Hockey-Stock in Frage stellte, als ein Skeptikerpaper angesehen.

Ansonsten, ich stimme Ihnen zu, dass längerfristig die positiven Effekte von climategate überwiegen, Ich denke aber auch, dass der persönlicher Preis für Jones und Mann ist gravierend gewesen

'PS:
Haben Sie zufälligerweise das neue Buch von Mann gelesen? Das Paper von Ihnen und von Storch wird darin auch erwähnt, mich würde '

Nein, ich habe es nicht gelesen. Ich hatte gehofft, dass Mann mir ein gezeichnetes Exemplar in Wien schenken würde. Es kam leider aber nicht dazu :-)

Grüsse
eduardo

Anonymous said...

@ Grundmann

There are two comments on both of your new papers over at Montford's blog ...

http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2012/5/6/grundmann-on-climategate-and-the-scientific-ethos.html

http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2012/5/6/the-cost-of-the-climategate.html

And another one on the hockey stick debate with some quite astonishing findings by Steve by McIntyre ...

http://climateaudit.org/2012/05/06/yamal-foi-sheds-new-light-on-flawed-data

V. Lenzer

Werner Krauss said...

Thanks for posting these rich articles! After going through both of them (in a far too superficial way), I was happy to get out of it with this statement in mind:

"And Ravetz steps up to the challenge of reflexivity giving a very personal account, looking
into the mirror and describing the powerful social mechanisms of being co-opted by the dominant discourse,
which led him to suspend critical reflection for a while."

Yep, I subscribe to this one.

Anonymous said...

Werner,

ich bin jetzt auch mit beiden Aufsätzen durch, mich beschleicht aber eher ein ungutes Gefühl.

Die Analyse stützt sich hauptsächlich auf Vorgänge um M. Mann, P. Jones und wenige andere. Ist dieser Personenkreis repräsentativ?

Nun ist es zudem auch noch der Personenkreis, der sich den härtesten Angriffen ausgesetzt war. Na gut, es ist legitim, von Wissenschaftlern auch unter außergewöhnlichen Bedingungen tadelloses Verhalten einzufordern und zu untersuchen, inwieweit sie sich korrekt verhalten haben oder eben nicht.

Was mir aufstößt ist aber, dass einerseits die aggressiven Angriffe aus der Blogosphäre ausgeblendet werden, andererseits aber Grundmann die Deutungen und Interpretationen z.B. von McIntyre oder Montford zur Grundlage bzw. zum Referenzmaßstab erhebt. Die Schlussfolgerungen basieren auf der skeptischen Sicht der Dinge. Ich frage mich wirklich, zu welchen Ergebnissen Grundmann gekommen wäre, wenn er M. Manns Buch zur Grundlage gemacht hätte bzw. welchen Wert seine Schlussfolgerungen haben?

Grundmanns Passagen zur Hockeystickdiskussion lesen sich geradezu, als wären sie direkt von dort übernommen worden, an manchen Stellen sträubten sich förmlich meine Nackenhaare.
Eine skeptisch gefärbte Prägung erkenne ich z.B. daran, dass bei Aussagen über Manns Sichtweise Wörte in Anführungszeichen gesetzt werden, bei der skeptischen Sichtweise diese aber durchgängig fehlen.

Nein, das soll jetzt kein Totalverriss sein (ein solches Urteil stünde mir auch gar nicht zu), ich habe auch sehr viel Interssantes gelesen und Futter zum Nachdenken gefunden, z.B. der Teil zu Pielke jr. Es ist nur schade, dass die guten Teile durch diese Einseitigkeiten in den Hintergrund gedrängt werden.

Ich prophezeie, dass die Diskussion über die Aufsätze in einem Rückfall in längst beendete Hockeystickdebatten münden wird. Das wäre schade, wäre aber auch selbstverschuldet.

Andreas

Anonymous said...

@ Werner Krauss

"And Ravetz steps up to the challenge of reflexivity ..."

Yes, this one is beautiful, thrilling, sounds like sort of a Dylan verse ... "The ghost of ’lectricity howls in the bones of his face ... and the the heat pipes just cough" etc.

You got here in a nutshell what we almost desperately have been looking for when discussing forms of climate poetry or stage plays.

V. Lenzer

Anonymous said...

@ Andreas

Ihr vegetatives Nervensystem verfügt über ein beachtliches Repertoire an Ausdrucksmöglichkeiten, Scham-Erröten, Aufstossen, Nackenhaar-Sträuben etc.

Symptome, die zuverlässig bei Verdacht auf Skeptizismus auftreten.

Zur Behandlung dieser Allergie, die vermutlich auch von heftigem Juckreiz begleitet sein dürfte, sei Ihnen eine spezifische Immuntherapie (Hyposensibilisierung) empfohlen.

Dazu beschäftigen Sie sich am besten ausführlich mit skeptischen Arbeiten, wie den hier vorliegenden.
Die Symptome klingen in der Regel bereits nach kurzer Therapie ab.

Und nein - auch wenn der Befund leicht zu verwechseln ist - es liegt kein "Rückfall in längst beendete Hockeystickdebatten" vor. Die hat vielmehr in der erforderlichen Breite und Tiefe noch gar nicht stattgefunden.

Grundmann verlangt deshalb zu Recht: "A call is made for more reflection on this case which should not be closed off because of political expediency"

Reichlich Gründe für diese Forderung finden Sie auch im Post N° 6 erwähnten Link zu climateaudit.

Die Idee "M. Manns Buch zur Grundlage" einer Bewertung der Affäre zu machen, ist unter therapeutischen Erwägungen kaum zielführend. Möchten Sie ernsthaft den Bock zum Gärtner bzw. den Pförtner zum Chefarzt machen?

Zumal Ihre Frage "Ist dieser Personenkreis repräsentativ?" erkennen lässt, wie Sie den Kern des Problems verfehlen. Dieser Personenkreis war in der Tat repräsentativ und beeinflusste den 4. Sachstandsbericht und das wissenschaftliche Umfeld, Zeitschriften, Reviews etc. wesentlich. Er tut dies z. T. in nicht unerheblichem Maße bis heute.

Das ganze System lässt weiterhin Anzeichen einer Autoimmunerkrankung erkennen, indem durch negative Selektion "skeptisches Gewebe" - an sich von unverzichtbarer organischer Bedeutung -kurzerhand abgestossen wird.

Suchen Sie deshalb nicht nach "skeptischen Prägungen" in Grundmanns Papier, das wirkt in etwa, als würden Sie eine Art wissenschaftlicher Zersetzung denunzieren wollen, - eignen Sie sich viel mehr selber eine ordentliche Dosis skeptischer Prägung an, mit allen positiven Wirkungen auf die oben erwähnten Symptome.

Kein ärztlicher Ratschlag, bloß Besorgtheit um Ihr Wohlbefinden.

V. Lenzer

Anonymous said...

Judith Curry weighs in ...


"The entire article is well worth reading" (Climategate and the scientific ethos)

and

"And I certainly agree with Grundmann’s final point:
We need much more reflection on this case which should not be closed off because of political expediency. The debate has only just begun"
(The legacy of climategate: revitalizing or undermining climate science and policy?)

http://judithcurry.com/2012/05/07/the-legacy-of-climategate

V. Lenzer

Werner Krauss said...

On the one hand I agree that
"We need much more reflection on this case which should not be closed off because of political expediency. The debate has only just begun"

On the other hand I would like to know why. Because I am afraid that some just want to revive the debate exactly because of political expediency. Or because the hockey stick debate is central to their careers and identities, while the climate caravan long has moved on?

Of course, for science studies this is a great field of study, as well for the history of science. Reiner's overview is fascinating and gives a great insight into this debate on the social sciences' side. And I am really curious which conclusions science studies will draw in the long run. Up to now, I think they are still remarkably shy and reluctant in driving forward the agenda and to emancipate themselves from ... from what exactly?

As said before, I consider Jerry Ravetz's take on reflexivity really interesting, who was "looking
into the mirror and describing the powerful social mechanisms of being co-opted by the dominant discourse,
which led him to suspend critical reflection for a while."

At this stage of revival of the debate, I would like to invite those who were and are on the skeptical side to also look into the mirror; I am sure there are desires to be found,too, which are not only driven by the search for truth about climate change. It's a group thing, too, right?

(And the least thing I am interested in is the umpteenth attempt to restore an immaculate image of SCIENCE which will inform politics and lead the stupid public. I am afraid that both sides agree on this point, and that's why both will meet again in the other world, be it heaven or hell, and still debate about the hockey stick and climategate.)

Anonymous said...

@ Werner

Thoughtful as always, especially the last sentence ("restoring an immaculate image of SCIENCE) which of course is silly and/or almost hopeless endeavour, kind of an immaculate Maria mania.

Judith Curry puts it well stating that "I found this paper (Grundmann on Climategate and the scientific ethos) to be quite insightful in terms of separating misconduct from ethos and institutions vs individuals.

This indeed opens a path which could much easier be followed than "winning THE debate" or this kind of witch-hunts on both sides of the truth seeker camps.

"... those who were and are on the skeptical side to also look into the mirror ... It's a group thing, too, right?"

Not really. Skepticism makes you rather lonesome on most occasions. But if you start thinking that you share the experience with just a few people you to would live under a delusion - hence a negative form of group think.

Most people are just followers. They decide once what side they are on - Barcelona or Madrid / PIK or Klimazwiebel - and that's it. They have their heroes, their little defeats and victories.
It's all about identification and it seems to be difficult to live or think without.

"Scientific truth" is a different thing. First you have to learn that it doesn't exist although you should try hard to achieve it. A contradiction at first sight and difficult to deal with. The more or less we are all lazy in our attempts, true V. Lenzers if you like ...

K. Lauer

eduardo said...

Reiner's article is published together with another article on Climategate by Maibach et al, along with an editorial by Myanna Lahsen

Mike Z said...

Some thoughts on these:
Perhaps Merton's norms would best be left out of the discussion, particularly if they're brought up largely to be dispensed with or moved past.
Is Merton simply such a notable figure on a topic (the ethos of science) where few others have dared to tread, that he still demands to be addressed?
I personally like Mulkay's (1976) view of the norms as part of a “vocabulary of justification” to be drawn on in particular rhetorical circumstances. I find it interesting how variants of the norms are invoked, but I find more interesting the disagreements on which norms to highlight and how.

On on the norm of communism - I think it can also be defined in a way to be quite compatible with Climategate behavior, if the open communication is intended to be within the scientific community, and boundary-work excludes the skeptics or public from this community.

To harp on Merton a bit more, the Grundmann opinion piece suggests that Jasanoff's statement about "deviant behavior" is grounded in Merton (and by implication, his norms). I really don't see how this is the case in her piece, where Merton is only explicitly cited in the rise of peer-review. Perhaps it would be useful for Jasanoff to draw on Merton as a "yardstick", but it is something which she might have good reason to avoid, given all the challenges of deploying his norms.

It's nice to see the science studies literature start to catch up on Climategate - I wonder how many more pubs we'll see in the next year or two.
For those interested, I got my commentary out at the end of last year:

The Shifting Politics of Climate Science

Society - Mike Zajko

http://www.springerlink.com/content/236w422g44844887/
(behind paywall)

hvw said...

Nice piece, Mike Zajko.

Science will continue to be an important source of
knowledge, but it need not be positioned as the source of
policy, where it will always be manipulated as a proxy for
political disputes.


I think this is the (trivial?), yet most helpful conclusion about this topic. Those who realize it can move on to do real work in science, policy, or at the interface. The rest may continue to argue about the veracity of a 14 year old figure and pry into a bunch of private emails.

Reiner Grundmann said...

Mike
"Is Merton simply such a notable figure on a topic (the ethos of science) where few others have dared to tread, that he still demands to be addressed?"

Let me put it this way: Merton is being treated like a "dead dog". He tried to develop what he saw as the values and norms of science. For many decades this analysis seemed to have become irrelevant for many science (and STS) scholars. However, when Climategate came along, people felt uneasy and did not know how to react. Should one condemn the questionable practices, ignore them, defend them?
Merton's norms provide a tool to identify problematic behaviour quite precisely. More precisely than the terminology used by commentators and review panels who used the much more general term "malpractice".
This is one reason why I think Merton is still important in this respect.

Another reason is that his critics and defenders to some extent have misunderstood him. Granting a suspension of scientific norms during controversies is a flawed solution.

Werner Krauss said...

Reiner,

naive question:
which of Merton's rules are not yet part of the rules of conduct or good practice in science?

Reiner Grundmann said...

Werner,
where are the rules of conduct specified?
Merton says they have not been codified anywhere and he tries to infer them from historical accounts and own observation.

Maybe others on the blog with a science education can enlighten us on this question. What kind of ethos is instilled into students? How is this done?

Werner Krauss said...

Reiner,

Die Vorschläge zur guten wissenschaftlichen Praxis des DFG dürften die Mertonian rules wietgehend abdecken. Bleibt die Frage der Durchsetzung, denn das ist nur eine Empfehlung. Kommt wahrscheinlich auf Land und Uni an. Plagiarism kann zum Beispiel unangenehme Folgen haben (Guttenberg), wird aber auch oft geduldet. Hat was mit der Ähnlichkeit zu ständischen Gesellschaften und zur Gerichtsbarkeit von Fußballklubs zu tun (der DFB hat ja auch eine eigene Gerichtsbarkeit).

Ich halte diese Regeln und die Diskussion darüber auch für wichtig, aber nicht zentral für das Verständnis oder die Beurteilung von climategate.

Climategate bedeutet unter Umständen das Ende einer Art der Argumentation, der Reduktion des Klimawandels auf die CO2-Temperatur Kurve. Und wie es dann weitergeht, das ist das Entscheidende. Mit dem Finger auf die Alarmisten zeigen, ist das Eine. Wie man aber die Bedrohung durch den Klimawandel richtig einschätzt - wissenschaftlich und politisch - ist die andere, wichtige Frage nach climategate. Oder nicht?

Reiner Grundmann said...

Werner,
can you put up a link to the DFG code of practice?

Still, the socialization of students on their way to becoming scholars involves research ethics. What do we know about this process? The DFG as research funding organization has no say in this.

Werner Krauss said...

@reiner

hier die Regel für gute wissenschaftliche Praxis des DFG: http://www.dfg.de/foerderung/rechtliche_rahmenbedingungen/gwp/index.html

Mathis Hampel said...

Die Frage nach dem Ethos der Wissenschaft muss natürlich immer neu gestellt werden – das Theoretisieren der Wissenschaft ist ja eine Übung (ein proxy) politisch-philosophischer Natur.
Natürlich muss man Institutionen so gestalten dass diese Dissens zulassen, vielleicht wird das leichter auf nationaler denn auf internationaler Ebene durchführbar sein (siehe IPCC). Und natürlich muss der einzelne Wissenschafter selbstkritisch denken und handeln (a al Popper).
Jasanoff hat die 'inquiries into climategate' übrigens als Versuch eines 'bureaucratic management of matters of social concern' genannt. Meine Zustimmung...denn wenn post-normale Wissenschaft preskriptiv wird ist die Theorie obsolet.

Reiner Grundmann said...

Mathis
"Jasanoff hat die 'inquiries into climategate' übrigens als Versuch eines 'bureaucratic management of matters of social concern' genannt. Meine Zustimmung...denn wenn post-normale Wissenschaft preskriptiv wird ist die Theorie obsolet."

I am sorry but you lost me there. Can you explain in more detail? I thought that the inquiries were suspect of doing a whitewash job, and Jasanoff thinks they are illegitmate as such, because they are bureaucratic?

And what does it mean that PNS becomes prescriptive?

Mathis Hampel said...

In her talk at UEA earlier this year Jasanoff described the inquiries' recommendations as managerial answer to publics' lack of trust in institutional authority. I too believe that it is symptomatic of the problem of authority as described by M.Hajer in 'Authoritative Governance' (2009) rather than one (but also) of science which the inquiries try to solve.

There are some problems with realising their recommendations, not least because the different inquiries work for different civic epistemologies (comments on climateaudit reveal views on why US vs UK inquiries are/are not authoritative). For Jasanoff they are just more of the same old story: get the science right (i.e. bolster its authority) and the rest will follow. I dont think she would accuse them of whitewash.

Finally the inquiries recommend a type of science which I think could be summed up under F&R's theory of 'post-norma'l science. Both 'normal' and 'post-normal' science work in a particular historical/geographical contexts and as such serve to legitimise certain models of science and society. If F&R think that the theory of 'normal' science has become obsolet, so will the theory of PNS.

more here: http://www.thetopograph.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/post-normal-science-popper-and-planet.html#comment-form

ghost said...

one question to Reiner: did it ever occur to you to talk with the people like Mann, Jones, Briffa, Osborne, etc.?

Reiner Grundmann said...

Ghost
sure, this would have been ideal. However, this would also be a different kind of research which needs much more resources. And bear in mind that these scientists were under pressure (several investigations plus media requests) and may have been reluctant or overly defensive. In the meantime there are interview based studies, albeit from journalists, such as David Pearce's. The Climate Files.

Anonymous said...

Reiner, I see you have so far failed to comment on my reaction (the first one in this thread), pointing out that your narrative on Briffa's reconstruction and the divergence problem is based on a misreading of the e-mails. I realise that you just use Pielke Jr's analysis, who himself clearly bases himself on McIntyre's misreading, but that does not make it right that you blindly accepted their interpretation.

Bam

Reiner Grundmann said...

Bam

feel free to provide a "correct" reading of the emails.

ghost said...

@reiner

thanks, but you talked with Montford (you advertised his book )or McIntyre (you wrote: hero with an old notebook), didn't you? (If not, okay, then I am wrong) And you are close with Hans and Eduardo who are also involved. Is there not a danger of a bias because you are personally involved?

Anonymous said...

Reiner, I already did in the very first comment to this thread.

It shows that the discussion in Tanzania was not about the last part of the Briffa reconstruction (with its divergence problem), but about the fact that it was warmer(!) during the LIA, and that an explanation was needed.

Key quote from the e-mails conveniently left out by McIntyre (at least originally):
"Perhaps Keith can help us out a bit by explaining the processing that went into the series and the potential factors that might lead to it being “warmer” than the Jones et al and Mann et al series??"

"warmer" being the key word here.

Of course, you complicate the matter further in your article by mentioning splicing temperature data onto reconstructions, something that was only done for a cover art picture on a WMO report. By leaving that part out, the ignorant bystander (and please think about how you interpret "ignorant" here) may get the impression that this relates to the IPCC report.

So, Reiner, will you correct your article?

If you will, you might also want to explain how the two comments from Jones you provide show "a double standard". I see him complain about two papers he considers wrong, and be positive about a paper that corrects work he considers wrong. Sounds like one single standard to me: wrong is not right and must be opposed. But perhaps social scientists have different norms of what can get into the scientific literature?

Bam

Reiner Grundmann said...

Bam
does this mean that you, Bam, are running the blog Deep Climate (anonymously), and that the link you provided is your evidence for my the correct analysis of Climategate?

Reiner Grundmann said...

Mathis
If Jasanoff says that the climategate inquiries are a bureaucratic management of matters of social concern the same could be said about the IPCC. This misses the point of looking into climategate.

Mathis Hampel said...

Reiner, I think the IPCC defined matters of social concern while climategate revealed matters of social concern, that is, questions of authoritative governance. There are many points to climategate, one of which is the never-tiring question of trust in science, which the inquiries' recommendations can hardly solve for good.

Anonymous said...

Reiner, nice try in evading the questions, but no cigar.

I do not run the deepclimate blog, nor do I claim it is the correct analysis of climategate.

What I claim is that the blog entry I linked to shows that an analysis of the actual e-mails used by Steve McIntyre, and blindly taken over by Roger Pielke Jr and you, does not support your claim that the discussions were about the divergence problem in the Briffa reconstruction. In fact, reading the actual e-mails, which I hope you have not done or otherwise you have been deliberately deceptive, shows that the divergence problem is not what was discussed in relation to "diluting the message".

Again, I realise that reading the whole e-mails, without leaving a sentence out, destroys your narrative and significantly dilutes one of your conclusions, but surely someone who dares write about scientific ethics would not dare leave false memes in his published papers?

Unless you can show me how that one sentence which was conveniently left out and which discusses Briffa's reconstruction as running WARMER must refer to the divergence problem. I look forward to the mental gymnastics to make that work!

And I apologise for bringing in the Jones' issue. We can take that up after you've explained to me how you can maintain your article does not have a fatal flaw on the paleoreconstruction discussions.

Bam

eduardo said...

Bam,

I think you are not correct in your interpretation of the word 'warmer', bit I also recongize that techically it is a trick issue for those not directly involved.

The discrepancy Mann was highlighting was that Briffa's reconstruction was colder in the second half of the 20th century. As all reconstructions had been aligned to show the same mean value in the second half of the 20th century ( a common procedure, so that all series display then deviations from this mean value) Briffas's reconstructions would appear artificially 'warmer' (this also the reason why Mann encloses the word warmer in quotes). Briffa's reconstruction, being colder at the end of the 20th century would need to be pushed upwards to be aligned with the rest. I think it is not related to the LIA at all in this case.

These are the relevant paragraphs in his email (note that Mann mentions here that Briffa's reconstructions declines at the end of the 20th century)

'I am perfectly amenable to keeping Keith's series in the plot, and can ask
Ian Macadam (Chris?) to add it to the plot he has been preparing (nobody
liked my own color/plotting conventions so I've given up doing this myself).
The key thing is making sure the series are vertically aligned in a reasonable
way. I had been using the entire 20th century, but in the case of Keith's,
we need to align the first half of the 20th century w/ the corresponding mean
values of the other series, due to the late 20th century decline.
......

So, if we show Keith's series in this plot, we have to comment that
"something else" is responsible for the discrepancies in this case. Perhaps
Keith can
help us out a bit by explaining the processing that went into the series
and the potential factors that might lead to it being "warmer" than the Jones
et al and Mann et al series?? '

Reiner Grundmann said...

Bam
"I do not run the deepclimate blog, nor do I claim it is the correct analysis of climategate."

Why not?

What I claim is that the blog entry I linked to shows that an analysis of the actual e-mails ...does not support your claim that the discussions were about the divergence problem in the Briffa reconstruction."

Even if your interpretation (based entirely on DeepClimate) was right, this detail would not undermine in the slightest the concerns about climate science which I discuss in my two papers.

By the way, it is quite disingenuous to refer to this early attempt by DeepClimate to stem the tide of critical evaluations of climate officialdom. I only can recommend readers to have a close look for themselves, as the many comments show what brittle construct we have been presented with. And the moderator comes to realize this & as s/he wants to shut down the debate by frequent interjections a la:

"I'm not going to let this thread devolve into a discussion of the divergence problem as such, which has been discussed often elsewhere";

"That was an excellent response - thanks! And now it is time to move on";

"I'm according myself the last word on the "divergence" issue per se. Enough is enough";

and finally admitting

"We're just going around in circles here. I think all the issues are out for others to see an evaluate. Let's leave it at that, shall we?"

In fact, we do not have first hand accounts of what went on behind the scenes. I gather Mann's new book The Climate Wars does not provide such an account and I doubt that Jones or Briffa have something in the pipeline. Mike Hulme, to his immense credit, never tried to play the game that the emails were quoted "out of context".

So when the dust has settled one would expect that some evidence can be gathered based on primary data.

ghost said...

@Eduardo,Reiner, (a bit also bam)

AGAIN: there is a simple solution: ask the scientists themselves!!!! How stupid is it to talk about an interpretation of a stolen, incomplete e-mail, if you could just ask?

Of course, they will roll with their eyes, when people wade in their PRIVATE, STOLEN emails, but they might answer if you politely ask.

So, again the question, why do talk openly about this without asking?

All in all: I am disgusted by the lack of decency here.

Anonymous said...

Reiner, I'm not very interested in squirrels, so you'll have to stick to the topic at hand.

I will thus try once more, and make my question as simple as possible.

Reiner, you state in your STHV paper that "At an IPCC meeting in Tanzania in September 1999, the temperature decline in Briffa's tree ring reconstruction was perceived by IPCC as "diluting the message,", as a "problem", as a "potential distraction/detraction" McIntyre quotes..." etc etc.

You then provide the selection from e-mail 0938018124 that McIntyre also provided.

What I will do here is cite the inconvenient section that McIntyre left out (let's call it "trimming", shall we?). I will ask you, Reiner, to explain how those two sentences in capitals, and in particular the first one, fits with the claim that the e-mail cited refers to the divergence problem. How can "the problem" be the divergence problem if Briffa's series is WARMER than the other two reconstructions?

Here it is:
"So, if we show Keith’s series in this plot, we have to comment that “something else” is responsible for the discrepancies in this case. PERHAPS KEITH CAN HELP US OUT A BIT BY EXPLAINING THE PROCESSING THAT WENT INTO THE SERIES AND THE POTENTIAL FACTORS THAT MIGHT LEAD TO IT BEING “WARMER” THAN THE JONES ET AL AND MANN ET AL SERIES?? WE WOULD NEED TO PUT IN A FEW WORDS IN THIS REGARD. Otherwise, the skeptics have an field day casting doubt on our ability to understand the factors that influence these estimates and, thus, can undermine faith in the paleoestimates. I don’t think that doubt is scientifically justified, and I’d hate to be the one to have to give it fodder!"

Bam

Anonymous said...

And as a slight follow-up:
http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/02/the-guardian-disappoints/

"Some of the more egregious confusions and errors were in the third part of the series. In this part, a number of issues that were being discussed among the paleo-community in 1999 were horribly mixed up. For instance, there was a claim that arguments on the zeroth-order draft of the 2001 IPCC report were based on Briffa’s reconstruction showed the 11th century as being almost as warm as the 20th century, while Mann’s graph found little sign of the earlier warming. But this is simply untrue since at the time Briffa’s curve only went back to 1400 AD (not the 11th Century) and the discussions had nothing to do with the medieval warm period, but rather the amount of multi-decadal variability in the three different reconstructions then available. This was corrected in the online edition, but the description of the dispute in the article is still very confused."

This refers to Pearce's misunderstanding of the issue.

Bam

Hans von Storch said...

Ghost/38 and similar comments - why not asking the scientists themselves involved?

For me, there is a simple answer - I was talking to some of them in the years before the publications of the e-mails, and later I could read what they really meant, when they wrote about me and others. For me, this destroyed the trust in believing their answers. We have read in the e-mails that some of them wanted to manipulate - not by using inventing or cheating with data, but by making sure that their view would dominate the discourse. Since many of these people are also "doing" blogs like "realclimate", where an open discussion is/was (?) suppressed, also these blogs can not count as reliable sources when finding out what happened behind the curtains. Lots of stuff on such blogs may be good, even very good, but I would always ask for independent confirmation.
If you, ghost, do believe them without such reservation - please feel free to do so, but do not ask me to follow.

ghost said...

Hallo Prof von Storch,

glaub ich, dass sie persönlich enttäuscht sind. Ich habe die E-Mails nicht gelesen, da ich in gestohlenen Sachen selten lese. Nun ja, ich glaube ihnen. Nun, aber das war doch mein Punkt: sind die Papiere von Reiner Grundmann frei von persönlichen Gefühlen?

Ich gebe ihnen auch recht, dass Blogs nur Blogs sind. Deswegen finde ich auch Dr Grundmanns absolut kritiklose Haltung zu bestimmten Blogs ein wenig seltsam. Widersprechen sie da nicht Dr Grundmanns Ansichten? Sie nannten realclimate, warum nicht Watts, climateaudit oder Bishop Hill. Aber ich finde, bspw. es gibt keine Beweise, dass GISTEMP Betrug oder völlig falsch ist, und doch versuchen es bestimmte Blogs immerwieder das zu behaupten, inkl. Bishop Hill und Watts Up. Und das von einem Tool, was seit Jahren völlig frei verfügbar ist, inkl. Doku, freier Reimplementierung und allen Eingangsdaten. Selbst getestet. Wie soll ich Blogs vertrauen, die nicht mal das hinbekommen?

Aber was ich überhaupt nicht verstehe, wie man bei Blogs von "suppression" reden kann? Sie hatten hier auch schon mal einen Beitrag von mir gelöscht: ich schrieb: Daily Mail ist keine vetrauenswürdige Quelle in Klimafragen und Dr. Michaels ist ein Lobbyist und kein Wissenschaftler. ZENSUR! Naja, ich hätte vielleicht die Schimpfworte weglassen sollen. Ein Watts droht Leuten, die nicht seiner Meinung sind und von Uni-Rechnern aus posten, dass er ihre Identität preisgibt. Nicht nett, auch löscht er gern Posts oder sperrt User, die ihm nicht passen. ZENSUR! SUPPRESSION! Dr. Pielke Sr. bspw erlaubt gar keine Kommentare, wie in der DDR!

Alles Quatsch: Blogs sind Blogs und der Hausherr macht die Regeln. Ich finde das völlig okay und ich muss anpassen.

Lange Rede kurzer Sinn: ich weiß hier nicht wirklich immer, was ein persönliches Problem ist und was wirklich ein Problem ist.

Beste Grüße,
ghost

Hans von Storch said...

Ghost/42 - wir haben hier keine inhaltliche Zensur, wie Sie sich überzeugen können - wohl aber eine Benimm-Zensur. Aus guten Grund, weil wir nämlich die Diskussion zwischen Leuten mit verschiedenen Positionen sehen möchten - und auch tun.
Dass neben realclimate auch andere blogs, gerade auch skeptische, "befürwortende Beiträge" bevorzugen, ist mir schon klar. Ich glaube auch nicht, dass ich Bishop Hill o.ä. als belastbare Quelle beschrieben habe. Dass ich die globale Thermometer-basierte Temnperatur-Reihe von CRU für belastbar halte, habe ich kurz nach der Publikation der ClimateGate in nature (doi:10.1038/463025a) zu Protokoll gegeben.

Ist damit Ihr Verhör für Sie zufriedenstellend beendet?

ghost said...

Ach, Herr von Storch, wenn Sie das schon als Verhör sehen... ich hab ja nicht mal nach Ihren E-Mails von 1998 gefragt. Sie sollten mal Charles Monnett fragen, was ein Verhör ist. Die Verhöre sind auch nachzulesen.

Nun, es ist aber doch schon wahr, dass Reiner Grundmann skeptische Blogs mehr als nur einmal kritiklos als zuverlässige Quelle gebracht hat. Das kam auch aus seinen Papieren raus. Das finde ich sehr einseitig.

Beste Grüße,
ghost

Anonymous said...

I would be very obliged if Reiner Grundmann can tell me what he intends to do about my little exposé of Steve McIntyre's clearly false claims about the meeting in Tanzania, and Reiner's blind acceptance of McIntyre's storyline, resulting in false claims about a group of IPCC authors.

I also would be interested to know what Hans von Storch, Eduardo Zorita, and Werner Krauss think about one of their colleagues repeating already debunked claims in a paper published in the scientific literature. I know there is little love between Eduardo and Hans, and the people Reiner attacked in his paper. However, I would hope that facts and scientific ethos are more important than personal feelings.

Bam

Hans von Storch said...

Bam/45 - you are welcome to voice your interest in my opinion, but you will appreciate that I will answer only those questions which I find worth to be responded to.
Your comments here have little to do in building dialogs, in discussing issues from different angles. Quite the contrary, what you do is almost only making claims, repeatedly, which is getting boring after a while. I find you remarkable inflexible in your contributions

When you consider certain assertions already "debunked", it could very well be that some would not join you in this claim. Just repeating, insisting on your "view" representing the "truth", and everybody deviating from this as "already debunked" is essentially "the old script", which went nowhere - apart of generating many skeptics.

You know that I am a supporter of the explanation that it is mostly GHGs causing the ongoing warming, - I want to have the Global Warming phenomenon taken seriously, but this needs to not polarization, as the old script is telling us, but building reason across different approaches.

Maybe, you try this approach once, but you are welcome to continue with your business-as-usual - of repeating your claims - but then you should not complain if nobody responds.

This was certainly the last response you got from me for the next future.

Anonymous said...

Ha! "not polarization" when someone points out that Reiner Grundmann has made a claim of scientific misconduct based on a selective quotation from the e-mails!

I guess we should just accept that it is fully acceptable to remove two sentences from an e-mail which are inconvenient in the storyline. Interesting "approach".

Bam