This project studies how climate policy networks around the United States are evolving. It documents the ideological and policy networks operating at the state and federal levels on climate/clean energy issues and observes how they are changing over time. The research maps out what clusters are forming around particular climate-related issues, what explains the formation of these clusters, and how they are related to specific policy actors. The methodology, which builds on previously NSF-funded research (see COMPON below for details), involves data collected from public documents, social media, and from policy actors engaged in the debates around climate/clean energy issues.

Along with the federal level, the project is currently focusing on state-level activities in Florida, Nevada, North Carolina, and Ohio.  This project is funded by the MacArthur Foundation.

Previous Related Research (COMPON PROJECT):

I directed the US case study for this project, which was funded by a grant from the Human and Social Dynamics Program of the National Science Foundation from 2008-2012.

Peer-reviewed publications include:

Jasny, Lorien, Joseph Waggle, and Dana R. Fisher.2015. “An Empirical Examination of Echo Chambers in US Climate Policy Networks.” Nature Climate Change. 5: 782-786. doi: 10.1038/nclimate2666

Fisher, Dana R., Joseph Waggle, and Lorien Jasny. 2015. “Not a Snowball’s Chance for Science.”  Contexts. Fall: 44-49. DOI: 10.1177/1536504215611896

Fisher, Dana R., Joseph Waggle, and Philip Leifeld.  2013. “Where Does Political Polarization Come From? Locating Polarization Within the U.S. Climate Change Debate.”  American Behavioral Scientist. Volume 57, Issue 1: 70 - 92.

Fisher, Dana R. Philip Leifield, and Yoko Iwaki. 2013. “Mapping the Ideological Networks of American Climate Politics."  Climatic Change. Volume 116: 523-545.


Research tools:

Survey Instrument for 2010 survey.

Dataset used in articles published in 2015 (formatted in accordance with the Institutional Review Boards at Columbia University [IRB Protocol # IRB-AAAG2612] and the University of Maryland [IRB Protocol #10-0751].

Codebook for analysis of 2010 data

Code for running the analysis in R (for 2010 data)



department of sociology ▪ university of maryland ▪