AIS Statement / Manifesto


This is the statement as of August 2011

Some Suggestions:


From Chadi Aoun
1) I thought that the opening statement is too categorical, and somewhat overstates the climate science certainty. While the warming of climatic systems is unequivocal, the proposition that the interrelation between human and earth systems is triggering anthropogenic drivers leading to global warming is 'very likely' - with over 90% confidence according to the IPCC 4AR. Given the complexity of climatic systems and their drivers a categorical scientific assertion is yet to be achieved. This does not mean that no action is required but rather presents a very strong impetus for action on both adaptation and mitigation measures. Consequently, I think it would be more prudent to restate the opening statement to such effect:
"The Association for Information Systems (AIS) accepts the consensus scientific opinion that <<warming of climatic systems is unequivocal>> leading to harmful and detrimental <<consequences>>, and that <<climatic>> change is <<very likely>> caused by human activity."
2) The use of the term 'environmental change' throughout the document is probably too generic. One of the poor arguments that skeptics often propose relates to weather systems which are volatile (you may have heard this one before "it does make you wonder sometimes, doesn’t it, how theoretical statisticians in the middle of the largest snowstorm in New York City’s history could stand there and say, ‘I don’t care what it’s doing. It’s going to get very hot soon.’"), but the main problem is with the relatively more consistent climate systems, which also leads to an increased volatility in weather systems. I think changing references from 'environmental change' to 'climate change' would be more specific in identifying the problem and bypassing such arguments.

From Steve Elliot: revisions here
Generally, the editing replaces ‘problems requiring resolution’ with ‘challenges needing to be addressed’ since the problems may be global and resolution may take generations so our expectations should be achievable. National and international policy is unlikely to be formulated by AIS although we can and should support those processes. AIS members should be encouraged to take action as encouragement is more likely to produce positive outcomes.
Transdisciplinary is suggested rather than multidisciplinary (more than one) or interdisciplinary (several integrated),
in that it is across and beyond academic disciplines, ie has elements of policy, practice and society.