Conspiracy Theory Handbook

The Cornell Alliance for Science empowers science supporters around the world with the tools and skills needed to communicate effectively about scientific topics and promote evidence-based policies and decision-making.

Part of this mission entails debunking anti-science conspiracy theories and providing credible, factual, science-based materials. Communications specialists Stephan Lewandowsky and John Cook — both of whom have spent years studying conspiracist thinking particularly in regard to climate change denialism — have put together the very useful Conspiracy Theory Handbook. This document, available in four languages, delves into the hallmarks of conspiracy theories and the scientific research into why people might be susceptible to them. Download it here:

On June 30, 2020, Lewandowsky and Cook joined Bright Simons, founder and president of mPedigree; Whitney Phillips, Syracuse University; Joanne Miller, University of Delaware; and moderator Mark Lynas discuss the nature and appeal of conspiracy theories and how to deal with them as part of our AfS Live! webinar series: