We were busy last week at the UK Social Marketing Conference, and are pleased to share one of our fellow presenters’ work on dog-koala ‘interactions’ in today’s Behaviour Change section. We also look at what makes polls more likely to be shared online, and some worldwide opinion on immigration in PPP.
Our Values Lab this week looks at the controversial subject of golliwogs, but we lighten the mood with a trip to Charlie’s Attic, the idle contrarian’s playground, which this week features the basic laws of human stupidity and a musical ticket barrier.
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The dog-koala behaviour change challenge
TCC spent last Thursday strutting its stuff at the UK Social Marketing Conference. As well as some delegates being brave enough to spend their time listening to us, we enjoyed hearing from a host of luminaries from the nudge universe too.
Among them was something a bit different from self confessed Weekly reader, Felix Hussenoeder of Friedrich Schiller University Jena, who spoke about the impact of social marketing on wildlife conservation. Dog-koala interactions are all too common and, for the koalas, all too one sided, with more than 600 koalas attacked by dogs over 15 years in the Redland City area of North East Australia alone.
The challenge for Felix and colleagues from Griffith University in Brisbane, was to influence owners’ behaviour so they could help their dogs to resist the temptation of attacking koalas. The key, they found, was to make the intervention not about koalas, but about dogs themselves – a fun, accessible and confidence building dog training offer that culminated in more advanced koala aversion skills. With plenty of online and social media promotion, and a DogFest event, the LeaveIt campaign bore fruit in terms of increased dog skills (including the all-important aversion), and secured buy-in from stakeholders with the inclusion of expert opinion.
You can read more and download Felix’s presentation here.
Whether you think polling is a fascinating science or over-analysed hokum, there seem to be more polls around than ever. But as most of us are too busy to study every one of them closely, it’s worth bearing in mind which ones are most likely to find their way into your consciousness.
Chris Hanretty has been looking into what makes polls more likely to be shared on social media – an environment, he reminds us, that is not representative of the general population. In the generally younger, more liberal sphere of Twitter, it’s polls that are kind to Labour that gain the most traction, with another key ingredient of ‘sexiness’ boosting shares further. In other words, the bigger change a poll predicts, the more it’s circulated.
So if you get your polling news from Twitter, you’re disproportionately more likely to see pro-Labour polls predicting big changes, which might have made these ones seem accurate in 2017, but less so in 2016, when pro-Remain polls were likely to have gained more traction.
Queen Mary University’s Prof Tim Bale yesterday posted this comment piece on whether golliwogs are racist and/or acceptable to sell or display. His research with YouGov reveals more than half the population believe it’s acceptable to sell or display them, and almost two thirds think they are not racist.
As Tim notes, there are strong correlations with age and ethnicity, with older and white respondents both less opposed to the dolls, as well as striking differences regarding respondents’ political affiliation and Brexit viewpoint. So which Values groups are those on each side of the argument likely to be? We headed down to the Values Lab to find out.
Picking out a few nuggets of demographic information Tim points to as impactful in his piece, the image above shows a broad estimation of those most likely to see the dolls as racist and/or unacceptable on the left, and the opposite on the right. What it suggests is that those most likely to object are firmly in the Pioneer/socially liberal Prospector zone in the bottom left, the former of which in particular tend to be motivated by ethics and universalism. Those who don’t see a problem meanwhile appear more likely Settler, in the top right – a group that tends to be more nostalgic for the way things were and less concerned with more ‘big picture’ issues.
Of course, this is just a quick experiment in the Lab, rather than a rigorous study in itself, but it’s interesting nonetheless to consider the possible polarity and different motivations for feelings around this issue.
Also this week, there was Pioneer pandemonium at the Mercato Metropolitano in South London last week as over 1000 visitors attended the UK’s largest ‘disco soup’.
And finally this week, Charlie’s Attic, where disco soup is always on the menu: