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Unformatted text preview: 1. Discuss the role that the science community and the media have played on environmental issues, such as on climate change, biodiversity conser- vation and pollution in the United States (with reference to readings such as Oreskes, Michaels, Cox and Hansen). A) How much is scientific con- sensus knowledge shaping environmental policy responses and what ex- plains the extent to which it has or has not? B) What role is the media play- ing in advancing public awareness on environmental issues. What are the factors that shape the medias role? C) how successful has the environ- mental movement been in the US to call attention to different environment- al problems? A) How much is scientific consensus knowledge shaping environ- mental policy responses and what explains the extent to which it has or has not? • Most U.S. citizens are unaware of most scientific consensus knowledge. The general public?s literacy may be insufficient for analyzing the complex issues by society today. The media plays a role in the naivety of Americans because: • Objectivity and balance: the need to appear objective and balanced often leads to presenting two view points, even if one of them is held by a small minority (ex. environmental conditions have been proven to be increasingly harmful, but opposing articles are shown to the public anyway) • Michaels-doubt is often cast on studies on environmental problems by simply questioning the legitimacy or performing a similar study that is designed to get different results. · Hansen: Scientific discretion, in some cases, may hinder commu- nication with the public. Reticence may be a consequence of the scientific method-success in science depends on continual ob- jective skepticism. Scientists don?t want to be accused on crying wolf if they are proven wrong. B) What role is the media playing in advancing public awareness on en- vironmental issues. What are the factors that shape the medias role? • The media is not doing much to help spread environmental aware- ness • Media news coverage tends to be event-driven and problem specific, and they tend to de-contextualize events. • Little room for presenting long-term issues. • Entertainment oriented: conflict and controversy gets ratings and subscriptions. ?Human interest? stories dominate · Cox: The media presents a dual view of the environment—both as aesthetic (forests, natural wonders) and as destructive (natur- al disaster, animal attacks); also as both a problem and a re- source. The public needs to demand more accurate, thoughtful, and in-depth news reporting and environmental programming C) how successful has the environmental movement been in the US to call attention to different environmental problems?...
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This note was uploaded on 03/20/2012 for the course SOC 166 taught by Professor Robinson during the Winter '12 term at UCSB.
- Winter '12