Inhibiting or Contributing? How Global Liberal Forces Impact Climate Change Scepticism
A significant portion of the global population are skeptical about climate change. Yet, the determinants and deterrents of climate skepticism at a global scale have not been sufficiently examined. Utilising data spanning 37 countries from 2000 to 2020, we assess the impact of nations’ embeddedness within global liberal frameworks on climate scepticism, generally and in the context of resistance against liberal ideals. Our findings, derived from multilevel modelling, indicate that increased embeddedness is linked with reduced climate scepticism; however, when global liberal forces encounter anti-liberal undercurrents within nation-states, the impact of liberal world society on tempering scepticism varies, mitigating scepticism at the national level, particularly within authoritarian regimes, but not at the individual level, especially among right-wing individuals. Paradoxically, the liberal world society appears to heighten polarisation of individual worldviews on climate change. Our analytical framework illuminates the contradictory role of the liberal world society, which simultaneously exacerbates and inhibits anti-liberal attitudes.