MSc course: Principles of Environmental Sustainability (P00807) The role of community participation in sustainable development. What shapes public attitudes and engagement? - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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MSc course: Principles of Environmental Sustainability (P00807) The role of community participation in sustainable development. What shapes public attitudes and engagement?

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Principles of Environmental Sustainability (P00807) The Principle of Participation in Environmental Sustainability Dr Claire Haggett Lecturer in Sociology of ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: MSc course: Principles of Environmental Sustainability (P00807) The role of community participation in sustainable development. What shapes public attitudes and engagement?


1
Principles of Environmental Sustainability
(P00807) The Principle of Participation in
Environmental Sustainability Dr Claire
Haggett Lecturer in Sociology of Sustainability
2
  • Why do we need to think about human behaviour and
    the environment?
  • Policies and plans are for people not developed
    in the abstract
  • Have to understand how they will be received and
    work
  • eg transport planning, solar panels on roofs
  • Individual or cultural explanations need to
    know which to appeal to
  • We are all people move beyond high-handed
    attitudes
  • Have to understand environmental attitudes and
    behaviour in the context of peoples lives

3
  • What shapes public attitudes and engagement?
  • People as individuals
  • People in contexts
  • People making up communities
  • Crucial to try and understand how people think
    about sustainable development and how to work
    with people and communities

4
Overview for today
  • Part 1 Understanding human behaviour
  • Public attitudes and behaviour
  • Public response to environmental issues
  • Break
  • Part 2 The role and nature of participation
  • The importance of public opinions
  • Case study of renewable energy
  • Part 3 Break
  • Part 4 Discussion
  • Part 5 Feedback and key points

5
Part 1 Understanding human behaviour
  • Overview
  • i) Understanding the emergence and extent of
    environmental concern
  • ii) Why dont people care more?
  • iii) Strategies for change and encouraging
    environmentalism
  • iv) Responsibility to care

6
  • Apollo 17 (Dec 1972)
  • Iconic image
  • World as a whole
  • for the first time
  • Able to see problems, disasters, devastation

7
i) Understanding environmental concern
  • General trend increase
  • Influence of specific events/issues
  • Widespread in the population
  • Concern and knowledge grew during the 1980s and
    1990s
  • DEFRA Survey of Public Attitudes to Quality of
    Life and to the Environment

8
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9
Explanations for the rise in environmental concern
  1. Environmental explanation
  2. Interest based explanation
  3. Post material values explanation
  4. Cultural based explanation

10
1. Environmental explanation
  • Environmental problems are serious
  • and are getting worse?
  • Dramatic, catastrophic nature
  • Advances in technology, communications
  • More able to see evidence of them

11
  • But does not explain rise and fall in concern
  • Hilgartner and Bosch (1988)
  • Concern not directly in line with seriousness of
    all problems
  • eg seals not slugs
  • Concern does not necessarily translate
  • into action

12
2. Individual interest based explanations
  • Rational individuals will not act unless
    personal cost is exceeded by the sum of selected
    incentives
  • Material incentives
  • Solidarity incentives
  • Purposive incentives

13
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14
  • But overly individualistic and simplistic to
    see participation in environmentalism as just
    about self-interest
  • Appeal of collective goods and benefits

15
3. Post material explanations
  • Ingleharts Post-Material Values Thesis
  • The rise of the ecology movement is not simply
    due to the fact that the environment is in a
    worse condition than it used to be. Partly this
    development has taken place because the public
    has become more sensitive to the quality of the
    environment than it was a generation ago
    (Inglehart, 1990372).
  • Shift from material to post-material values
  • Idea of hierarchy of needs

16
  • Scarcity hypotheses have money,
  • so worry about environment

17
So
  • Satisfaction of material needs does not
    necessarily lead to the development of
    post-material values
  • Lack of material values does not necessarily mean
    no post-material values
  • Environmental Justice movement

18
  • Developing countries Gallup Health of the
    Planet survey of 24 nations
  • Citizens in less economically developed nations..
  • much more likely to see their local environments
    as degraded
  • more likely to see their national environments as
    degraded
  • Just as likely to see world environmental
    problems as very serious..
  • ... than citizens in the wealthier nations

19
4. Cultural based explanation The Risk Society
  • Beck environmentalism as a response to the
    risk society
  • Broader changes in society
  • Technology out of control
  • Spread of bads rather than goods
  • Hazards produced in the growth of the industrial
    society become predominant (Beck, 199628-29).
  • Minimising the consequences of modern society
    becomes more important than the accumulation of
    wealth

20
New characteristics of environmental risks
  • Risks no longer tied to their place of origin
  • Risks can affect everyone risks endanger all
    forms of life on this planet (Beck, 199322).
  • Risks are felt across space
  • Risks are felt across time atomic accidents..
    affect even those not yet alive at the time
    (Beck, 199322)

21
Poverty, justice and sustainable development
  • Minimising the consequences of modern society
    becomes more important than the accumulation of
    wealth
  • Risks are globalised
  • But - risks are felt differently by different
    people
  • The rich may be able to buy themselves a certain
    amount of freedom from risk
  • Housing, nutrition and occupation
  • Invariably the poor who live in
  • polluted areas, face the possibilities of
  • contaminated food, and the prospects
  • of hazardous jobs and working conditions

22
Impacts of environmental risks
  • Rich countries produce vast bulk of past and
    current GHGs
  • Yet those to suffer most from climate change
    will be in the developing world
  • fewer resources for coping with storms, with
    floods, with droughts, with disease outbreaks,
    and with disruptions to food and water supplies
  • Exporting of risk pollution and chemicals
    relaxed environmental regulations for investment

23
  • Environmentalism as a response to huge
    environmental problems and inequalities
  • As part of a cultural shift
  • Societal transition goods and wealth to
    pollution and bads

24
ii) Why dont we care more?
  • Catastrophic consequences
  • International impacts and in the UK
  • Media coverage
  • Fourth Assessment Intergovernmental Panel on
    Climate Change
  • Report on understanding of the human and natural
    drivers of climate change, climate processes and
    attribution, and estimates of projected future
    climate change.
  • Conclusions
  • Climate change is happening
  • It is caused by human impacts
  • The effects will last for centuries to come

25
Why dont we care more?
  • Issues often characterised by
  • Being invisible
  • Being temporally distant
  • Being spatially distant
  • Being science based
  • Lack of direct experience (mediated information)
  • Responsibility cannot unite against a common
    enemy
  • Impacts incremental
  • No definite deadline
  • Huge range of causes and actions one persons
    contribution infinitesimal
  • Environmental bads can be social and economic
    goods eg cheap flights
  • Example from India The Peoples Car

26
Practicalities
  • Time consuming public transport
  • Costs higher at the point of consumption new
    boiler
  • Yucky green nappies
  • Lack of opportunities

27
Public deficit model
  • If only people knew better
  • But people are not necessarily stupid, ignorant,
    or irrational
  • They do not necessarily lack information
  • More reports will not necessarily correlate with
    increased environmentalism
  • Environmental attitudes and behaviour have to be
    understood in context

28
iii) Strategies for change
  • General information provision
  • Reducing opportunities for ungreen behaviour
  • Sticks
  • Carrots
  • Inciting fear
  • Small, incremental, tangible change

29
1. General information provision
  • Most frequent but not most effective providing
    general information, and providing information
    about consequences
  • http//www.youtube.com/watch?vhCJotacAmo4

30
2) Reducing opportunities
  • Reducing opportunities for un-green behaviour
  • 47 of C02 emissions from homes
  • Climate Change Bill
  • Phasing out stand-by buttons
  • Energy saving light bulbs
  • Easier decision making or removing
  • peoples choice?

31
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32
3) Encouraging environmentalism sticks
  • Punishments
  • Regulation
  • Polluters pays
  • Not just pollution
  • Pay-as-you-throw
  • Road pricing
  • Low Emission Zone 200 charge for lorries in
    London
  • Sledgehammer approach
  • Would individuals choose to do this without
    (large) financial penalties?
  • Is the Govt right to think of the greater good
    (air quality, illness and death) and force
    drivers to do this?
  • Doesnt encourage support for specific or wider
    incentives

33
4) Encouraging environmentalism carrots
  • Rewarding or making easier green behaviour
  • Free home insulation
  • Grants for solar panels
  • Reduced council tax for energy efficient homes
  • HIPs
  • Car share schemes
  • Personal, social, community rewards

34
5) Inciting fear
  • Inducing regret arousing fear
  • Least effective
  • http//www.youtube.com/watch?vQD2WTK94c1Ufeature
    related

35
  • 6) Small, incremental, tangible change
  • Most effective setting specific goals prompt
    reviews of behaviour generate community-talk,
    engaging people in locally relevant ideas
  • You do influence people by helping
  • us to see what we want to do
  • Induces goodwill and the experience
  • of facilitation
  • Enhances authority
  • Promotes mobilisation

36
Example 1 TEU
  • Collected waste from departing students halls
  • 7 tonnes of waste was collected from a pool of
    4000 departing students and diverted from
    landfill.
  • 3 tonnes of carbon saved
  • Goods given a new home - reducing consumption,
    waste and saving students money

37
Wider consequences?
  • Charity Freshstart
  • An estimated 1000 people attended during the
    first three hours of the event
  • The engagement team talked to those in the very
    long queue about different programmes and signed
    up people who want to participate in other events
  • www.teu.org.uk

38
Responsibility Other people
  • Other peoples behaviour, and what they should
    and shouldnt do
  • eg environmentalists and flying
  • If only everyone else would drive less..

39
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40
Other people
  • We all engage in un/green behaviour
  • We are all other people
  • Can we expect other people to do things we
    wouldnt be prepared to do ourselves?

41
Summary of this lecture The importance of
understanding human behaviour
  • Rise of environmentalism
  • Environmental explanation
  • Interest based explanations
  • Post material explanations
  • Cultural shifts societal transitions
  • Factors that influence the relationship between
    problems and concern

42
Summary of this lecture The importance of
understanding human behaviour
  • Different strategies to encourage
    environmentalism
  • All important because
  • Have to understand how policies will be received
    and work
  • eg transport planning
  • Information, fear or incentives
  • Behaviour as interest based? Or culturally
    informed?
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