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Discussion on Whether Can a Growth Mindset Mitigate Climate Change

Concerns about climate change are very serious worldwide, with 54% believing it is a serious problem. Thus, Climate change mitigation is needed by taking measures to reduce global warming and its consequences. Because carbon emissions from the combustion of coal, fuel, and gas are the primary cause of climate change, sustainable energy and the use of clean energy sources can help to minimize the use of fossil fuels. We discover that human behaviors are key in driving and responding to global climate change. As a result, the psychological distinction between growth and fixed mindsets impacts mitigating and responding to climate change/climate issues. It also helps to define how people perceive climate change and understand and change personal and family behavior. Numerous social psychology studies have investigated latent lay beliefs in evolution and stability. People’s perceptions of themselves and their surroundings can significantly impact their actions. As a result, we investigated how to lay beliefs about the growth mindset affects climate change mitigation.

According to Dweck (2012), a person with a fixed mindset believes that their intellectual, fundamental skills, and capabilities are fixed traits. In contrast, someone with a growth mindset understands that their skills can be improved through hard work, practical instruction, and perseverance. Also, a person with a fixed mindset does not necessarily believe that everyone is equal or that anyone can become an Intellectual; instead, they feel that everyone can improve their intelligence with the study. On the contrary, the growth mindset holds that once someone can reach a certain level, their goal is always to appear intelligent and never unintelligent. This suggests that a growth mindset increases intellectual achievement, assists long-standing enemies in resolving their differences, decreases chronic aggressiveness, and strengthens willpower. If human nature is defined by people’s capacity to grow and transform, then the challenge is understanding how climate change arises and optimizing it climate change. (Braithwaite et al., 2018). At the personal level, people can believe that human characteristics are either fixed (“an entity theory”) or subject to change (“an incremental theory”). As a result, in a study on the connection between lay theory about the world and environmental objectives, we shall talk about Soliman & Wilson.

Soliman and Wilson’s Research

According to Soliman and Wilson (2017), it is critical to investigate the relationship between people’s beliefs about whether the world has a fixed or growth mindset and their desire to engage in various pro-environmental behaviors. It is also essential to understand what the public believes about how stable or unstable the world is. People’s mindset perspectives on the potential efficacy of mitigation initiatives, their level of involvement in pro-environmental activities, and their skepticism about climate change are all influenced by a major psychological factor. As a result, we can expect that climate change will significantly alter life on Earth and that significant behavioral changes will be required to mitigate its effects. As a result, the concept of “changing” is central to both the problem and the solution.

Soliman and Wilson (2017) carried out an online survey. They found 297 American participants through Amazon Mechanical Turk and solicited their feedback on critical societal issues. After educating them on the effects of climate change in North America due to global warming, they invited them to imagine what North America would look like at the end of the era. Another survey question addressed the belief in mitigation. Do they believe that adopting more sustainable human behavior will help mitigate climate change’s future effects? That was the question. The intention to engage in environmentally friendly activity was also investigated, as were people’s beliefs about the fundamental stability or malleability of their reality. In their findings, incremental theorists believe that change is possible and employ more effective self-regulation when confronted with adversity. This observation supports their conclusion that people who believe the world is flexible believe mitigation actions can be successful solutions and, as a result, self-report higher levels of pro-environmental intentions (Duchi et al., 2020). They discover that climate change skepticism is more conceptually innovative when developing theories about how the world is changing. However, they discovered a link between theorists and people’s intentions to engage in various environmental behaviors, ranging from posting news and discussing it on social media to more significant actions such as protesting and voting based on environmental factors (Hornsey et al., 2016). Thus, by emphasizing action over defensive strategies such as denial, people who believe society is capable of change may be able to overcome the unpleasant emotions that environmental communications can elicit. They discovered that this intervention reduced African American students’ perceptions of stereotype danger, improving their academic experiences and grade point average (Soliman & Wilson, 2017). Similarly, encouraging people to see their surroundings as more malleable encourages them to identify environmental issues and become more involved in environmental causes.

The limitation of this study concerned what causes people to believe that their reality is stable (vs. malleable). Because cultural values and life experiences can influence whether people believe the universe is primarily dynamic or constant. For example, one set of studies discovered that when people face socio-cultural constraints, such as limited job mobility, they develop entity theories about their world, which influences their performance projections. Furthermore, determining whether political ideology influences people’s lay worldviews was difficult (Soliman & Wilson, 2017).

The empirical implication of the study was that lay beliefs about the world’s changeability influence pro-environmental beliefs or actions. Several studies have found that simple explanations of the world can influence people’s moral beliefs. Individuals who believe in the entity theory of the world see their reality as unchanging constants. As a result, they frequently adopt a strict, duty-based moral philosophy that emphasizes that people are carrying out their responsibilities under the current system. They discovered that this intervention reduced African American students’ perception of stereotype danger (specifically, knowledge of negative stereotypes affecting their performance), enhancing their acquired knowledge and raising their grade point average. Also, encouraging people to think of their surroundings as more malleable may encourage them to identify environmental issues and become more involved in environmental causes. Furthermore, participation is critical for mitigating the effects of climate change and ensuring the Earth’s future.


To summarise, while it appears that people are concerned about climate change, few are actively attempting to mitigate it. As a result, having a growth mindset is associated with more accepting views on climate change, positive beliefs about potential mitigation measures, and pro-environmental behavioral tendencies. Furthermore, people’s attitudes, beliefs, and behavioral tendencies were positively related to their growth mindset after researching climate change. The world can change and adopt more environmentally friendly social behaviors.


Braithwaite, J., Churruca, K., Long, J. C., Ellis, L. A., & Herkes, J. (2018). When complexity science meets implementation science: a theoretical and empirical analysis of systems change. BMC medicine, 16(1), 1–14.

Duchi, L., Lombardi, D., Paas, F., & Loyens, S. M. (2020). How a growth mindset can change the climate: The power of implicit beliefs influencing people’s views and actions. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 70, 101461.

Dweck, C. S. (2012). Mindsets and human nature: promoting change in the Middle East, the schoolyard, the racial divide, and willpower. American Psychologist67(8), 614.

Hornsey, M. J., Harris, E. A., Bain, P. G., & Fielding, K. S. (2016). Meta-analyses of the determinants and outcomes of belief in climate change. Nature climate change, 6(6), 622–626.

Soliman, M., & Wilson, A. E. (2017). Seeing change and bringing change in the world: The relationship between lay theories about the world and environmental intentions. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 50, 104-111.


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