This research, published in the latest issue of the Revista Latina de Comunicación Social (Latin Journal of Social Communication in English) proposes and performs an analysis of the dialectic strategies used by the daily press to treat environmental information.
Jose Ignacio Lorente, a lecturer at the UBC and one of the researchers who participated in the project told SINC that the study was concerned with "the way in which social communication media, particularly news media, contribute to creating and spreading social visions of sustainable development and the conservation and protection of the environment in general and natural heritage in particular".
The research team studied the information published in connection with the environmental summit held in Bali in 2007. Apart from this analysis, the researchers complemented this information with a survey carried out in Urdaibai, the Basque Country. The questions referred to the perceptions, attitudes and willingness to participate in mitigating the adverse effects of climate change, aspects in relation to the social representations identified in the analysis of the contents of the study.
The extensive analysis of the dialectics included an evaluation of the so-called news agendas, as well as framing procedures (the way in which the media determine how they will consider and publicly present information) and priming procedures (which ensure the relevance of certain aspects of the news that sustain the reasoning behind a given interpretation of the facts).
Lorente believes the conclusions of this study suggest that "the media make an active contribution to tackling the complexity of the sustainability crisis of the current model of development, by confining their interpretation to environmental problems, but also fail to consider the social, economic and cultural aspects of a production system based on growth and the massive exploitation of natural resources".
What Happens and What the Media Says
According to the results of the study, the news agenda that the media developed regarding the Summit in Bali focused on scientific evidence of the global dimensions of climate change, the fact that its potentially devastating effects could be immediate and its anthropogenic nature. However, according to the researchers, this agenda "avoided addressing the real reasons behind the political argument in detail, by means of a narrative strategy in which dramatising conflicts, threats and delays regarding CO2 quotas prevailed," becoming the top priority for the Bali Summit.
However, Lorente adds, "the emphasis the media placed on scientific evidence regarding the human nature of the causes for climate change was not linked to citizens' sphere of activity, despite fact that their everyday decisions and behaviour - transport, energy saving, recycling – account for 20% of the problem".
According to the research by the UBC, alarmist and catastrophist news focusing on the risk of natural disasters and the urgency of political and economic action "places the emphasis on the heroic efforts of abstract and distant individuals whose motives are not always clear". This approach, they say, appears to lack references to or be based on citizen's everyday life.
Furthermore, the prominence of the eco-efficient approach (based on expectations that techno-scientific development is enough to mitigate the effects of climate change) results in the media not covering the debate in connection with the social, economic and cultural model that citizens are willing to assume and share, reinforcing instead, according to Lorente, the perspective that our current way of life, production and consumption is the only option available when it comes to interpreting development and sustainability."
José Ignacio Lorente; José Enrique Antolín; Francisco Javier Doblas. "La construcción mediática de lo ecológico. Estrategias discursivas en la información de actualidad". Revista Latina de Comunicación Social. Número 64, páginas 315-327. 2009.
SINC | EurekAlert!
Drone vs. truck deliveries: Which create less carbon pollution?
31.05.2017 | University of Washington
New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...
Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...
19.06.2017 | Event News
13.06.2017 | Event News
13.06.2017 | Event News
27.06.2017 | Earth Sciences
27.06.2017 | Earth Sciences
27.06.2017 | Life Sciences