Bulkeley, H. (2000). Common knowledge? Public understanding of climate change in Newcastle, Australia. Public Understanding of Science, 9, 313. Retrieved from http://pus.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/9/3/313
This paper argues that public understanding of climate change not only involves knowledge of its physical processes, but also encompasses wider issues concerning the relation between society and nature. It examines the conclusions of previous research, and assumptions made within the policy community concerning public understanding of climate change. It is argued that in each case, in accordance with the information deficit model, recorded levels of ignorance are seen as a barrier to effective public involvement in the policy process. This view is challenged by research findings from Newcastle, Australia. Public understanding of global environmental issues drew not only on scientific information, but also on local knowledges, values, and moral responsibilities. Further, respondents connected the issue to their communities, and suggested that individual action is morally sanctioned, despite concerns for the efficacy of such action and the lack of government or industry support. Where institutional realignment has occurred to provide renewable energy to householders, public involvement has been forthcoming. These findings suggest that rather than focus on the provision of information, policy attention should be directed to the social and institutional barriers that act to constrain public involvement in addressing global environmental issues.
Retrieved from http://pus.sagepub.com/cgi/reprint/9/3/313
(2000). Common knowledge? Public understanding of climate change in Newcastle, Australia. Public Understanding of Science
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