In adddition to providing some basic information on reporting on climate change, biologist George Kling of the University of Michigan presented 10 suggestions on how journalists can do a better job reporting science. His list follows:
1. Prepare beforehand.
2. Email a list of questions prior to the interview.
3. Make your deadline clear. Lead time is appreciated, as journalists and scientists don't have the same expectations about deadlines.
4. Understand the scientist's dilemma of uncertainty. (Scientists can't always predict what's going to happen, just like weathermen can't always predict the weather.)
5. Prepare for a lack of concrete answers. (Decide how you will use the information by providing context for the reader.)
6. Ask for an analogy (sports, music, theater, etc.), or examples used in a classroom. These analogies can help your readers understand abstract information.
7. Use the scientist's words and don't substitute (e.g. "natural event") unless you get the scientist's permission.
8. Don't lead with the highly unlikely scenario. (Cultivate the relationship with the source so that you can return to her for more information.)
9. Repeat your understanding. "So you are saying that....right?"
10. Send story passages for the scientist to check for technical accuracy before it goes to press.