Public Risk Perceptions, Understandings, and Responses to Climate Change and Natural Disasters in Australia and Great Britain
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This final report presents and discusses national survey findings from a collaborative and cross-national research project undertaken by Griffith University (Australia) and Cardiff University (UK) examining public risk perceptions, understandings and responses to the threat and unfolding impacts of climate change in Australia and Great Britain. The Australian national survey was undertaken between 6 June and 6 July, 2010 and involved a representative and geographically and demographically stratified national sample of 3096 respondents. The British survey was undertaken between 6 January and 26 March, 2010 and involved a representative quota sample of 1822 respondents residing in England, Scotland and Wales. These articulated surveys were distinctive in their cross-national comparative collaboration, in their psychological and social science nature, focus, and design, in their indepth nature, and in their focus on underlyingpublic understandings and psychological responses to climate change. This report addresses common findings from these two linked surveys, and expands discussion of issues and findings from the Australian survey. A report detailing the UKsurvey findings is available separately (Spence, Venables, Pidgeon, Poortinga, & Demski, 2010). As well as shared questions and objectives, each survey had additional and differing objectives, with the Australian survey also examining in more detail public risk perceptions, direct exposure and experience, and psychological responses and impacts to natural disasters. The British survey examined in more detail respondents' perceptions of energy policies and futures for the United Kingdom. The Australian survey also differed in that it was specifically designed and planned to establish a data base and research platform for documenting and monitoring climate-related changes and impacts in the human landscape over time, including changes in risk perceptions and understandings.
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Social and Community Psychology