Heat and happiness: findings from the Twitterverse

man with fan on hot day

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In the face of climate change, scientists and social scientists have produced many studies of weather patterns and how they are likely to affect agriculture, energy, disease, conflict and other vital aspects of our lives.

Yet one of the hardest things to figure out, according to resource economist Max Auffhammer, is “how climate change will affect human well-being due to factors that are not traded in markets.”

In a recent blog post, the Berkeley prof discusses graduate research by Patrick Baylis looking at the novel nexus of heat and happiness. The recent alum forges a new path by analyzing emoticons and swear words used on Twitter and correlating that data with locations and weather. Baylis uses “algorithms from computational linguistics to translate the occurrence of certain words into ‘happiness’ scores,” he notes.

Read Auffhammer’s piece, and learn how heat can push us over an emotional cliff, on the Berkeley Blog.