Better Ways To Name Hurricanes, RankedKyle Wagner6/02/14 6:16pmFiled to: underexplained listsmoderately explained listshurricaneshurricane namesshutterstockRegressing769EditPromoteShare to KinjaToggle Conversation toolsGo to permalinkThere's a paper making its way around the internet today that puts forth that hurricanes that are named after women have been historically more deadly than those named after men. There's an appealing simplicity of stupid to this—people associate men with strength, and get killed by hurricanes because they don't see women as threats—but the research isn't quite as conclusive as it's being made out. AdvertisementIn a very quick nutshell, the experiment led by Kiju Jung of the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign asked participants to rank hurricane names by femininity, then cross-checked the results against how much destruction the storm caused. It then asked participants if they'd flee from storms with male and female versions of the same name (Christopher, Christina; Alexander, Alexandra). Even excluding hurricanes Katrina and Audrey, they found hurricanes to be three times more deadly when given a feminine name. The concerns here are the usual nerd-brakes being applied to mainstream statistical whatnots. National Geographic's Phenomena talked to Jeff Lazo of the National Centre for Atmospheric Research, who points out that the relationship of femininity and deadliness is not actually statistically significant once you break down the hurricanes into post-1979, at which point hurricanes began receiving male names (p=0.073), and that going back to 1950 with the all-woman-names hurricanes is tough, because hurricanes, as a general rule, are getting less deadly as time goes on. Further, the participants were all college kids living in Illinois, and not residents of hurricane-prone regions.