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Chapter 6 offers the first look into the Discussion stage (Stage 3) of the 4D Framework. We focus on what people feel during a political discussion, captured using psychophysiological measurement during two different lab experiments. In the Psychophysiological Anticipation Study, we measure changes in participants' heart rates and skin conductance as they anticipate a political discussion. We find that individuals had a larger psychophysiological response to even the thought of engaging in a political discussion, compared to observing contentious discussions on video. In the Psychophysiological Experience Study, we measure variation in heart rate and skin conductance during real conversations. We find that individuals exhibit physiological signs of discomfort while in these conversations, especially when the conversation is disagreeable.
Chapter 7 continues our examination of the Discussion stage (Stage 3) of the 4D Framework, aiming to better understand what people actually verbally express in political conversations. We use a series of vignette experiments and a lab experiment to examine the extent to which people express their true opinions to the group, or engage in other expressive behaviors like self-censorship, silencing, or conformity. We find lab experimental evidence of conformity in real conversations and our vignette experiments revealed that individuals were less likely to reveal their real opinions when they were in the political minority and when they were less knowledgeable. We also find that individuals who were less knowledgeable were more likely to have affiliation concerns that explained their expression behavior. Finally, we analyzed the transcripts from the conversations in the Psychophysiological Experience Study to examine variation in what and how individuals discussed politics. We found that weak partisans were most likely to "hedge" their language when revealing their opinions and political identities.
Oxygen isotope stage 3 (OIS 3) climate and its variations are the focus of the Stage 3 Project. The objective of the OIS 3 modeling effort is twofold: (1) to explore the importance of different boundary conditions on the climate of Europe and (2) to develop climate simulations that best reproduce the wealth of OIS 3 observations. Given the complexity of the topography and coastlines, the modeling effort is based on a “nested” General Circulation Model (GCM) and mesoscale model (RegCM2) with climate simulations for Europe on a 60-km grid spacing. The key conclusions are as follows: (1) The mesoscale model, driven by GCM output, does a reasonable job of reproducing the modern European climate. (2) OIS 3 variations in orbit, CO2, and ice-sheet size are of little significance in explaining the observed climate variability. (3) The model results focus attention on North Atlantic sea-surface temperatures (SST) as a major factor in explaining OIS 3 climates. (4) Experiments for different SST values capture a number of systematic changes in sea-level pressure and precipitation. (5) Climate models simulate substantial European cooling and significant changes in precipitation, but they do not explain large differences between OIS 3 warm and cold episodes.
Oxygen isotope stage 3 (OIS3), an interstade between approximately 60,000 and 25,000 yr B.P., presents an ideal opportunity to compare high-resolution climate simulations with the geologic record. To facilitate this comparison, the results of a mesoscale climate model (RegCM2) embedded in the GENESIS GCM are utilized to drive a vegetation model (BIOME 3.5). The BIOME output is then compared with OIS3 compilations derived from pollen. The simulated biomes agree well with the pollen-based biomes in southern Europe; however, disagreements occur in the northern part of the domain. The most striking mismatch involves the distribution of tundra. The models fail to have tundra extend to its observed position as far south as 50°N in central Europe during OIS3. The model also fails to have permafrost extend southward to its observed position between 50°N and 55°N in western Europe during OIS3. A variety of sensitivity experiments are performed to investigate these mismatches. These experiments demonstrate the importance of annual and summer temperatures and the length of the winter season in creating improved matches between the model results and the inferred distributions of vegetation and permafrost in northern Europe.
Oxygen isotope stage 3 (OIS 3), encompassing the long middle section of the last glacial interval, has been the focus of an intensive high-resolution climate modeling effort for Europe. These model simulations produce substantially colder climates than modern simulations; however, the temperatures appear warmer than many proxy indicators suggest. In order to evaluate the importance of the model boundary conditions, comparable simulations are completed for the last glacial maximum (LGM). The LGM simulation produces a much colder European continent than OIS 3, despite similarities in the specification of sea-surface temperatures (SSTs). Ice-sheet dimension is evidently a key factor in explaining the difference in European climates over the past 40,000 yr. However, underestimates in specified OIS 3 ice sheets cannot be invoked to explain the discrepancies, since data strongly indicate small ice-sheet extents at that time; this leaves errors in specified OIS 3 SSTs as the most likely cause.
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