Title

The Role of Newspapers in Environmental Policy Change: Media Framing of Climate Change Events in British Columbia and Alberta

Submitter and Co-author information

Victoria Mahon, University of WindsorFollow

Standing

Undergraduate

Type of Proposal

Oral Research Presentation

Challenges Theme

Open Challenge

Your Location

University of Windsor

Faculty

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Jamey Essex

Abstract/Description of Original Work

How does the media frame wildfires in BC and Alberta? In two provinces with different climate change policies and economic concerns, does the media mirror political beliefs? Policy in Canada is determined by the opinions and beliefs of individuals, the information they access, and what people believe to be the causes of problems. The level of attention to policy problems, the framing strategies used, and the presented scope of possible policy solutions by the media is important for defining the problem policy makers will have to solve. The Narrative Policy Framework, created in America, identifies narrative framing strategies and measures the role of media in policy change. This research builds on the literature of existing case studies in the United States to test this framework on extreme weather incidents in BC and Alberta. In the Canadian context, the political landscape varies between provinces and over time, as eras of environmentalism tend to alternate with times of economic hardship.

By looking at British Columbia and Alberta wildfires, this research examines how the media frames these stories to determine whether they are seen as climate change incidents or not and contributes to the understanding of how media framing compares between Canadian jurisdictions and in contrast to the American state-level examples.

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The Role of Newspapers in Environmental Policy Change: Media Framing of Climate Change Events in British Columbia and Alberta

How does the media frame wildfires in BC and Alberta? In two provinces with different climate change policies and economic concerns, does the media mirror political beliefs? Policy in Canada is determined by the opinions and beliefs of individuals, the information they access, and what people believe to be the causes of problems. The level of attention to policy problems, the framing strategies used, and the presented scope of possible policy solutions by the media is important for defining the problem policy makers will have to solve. The Narrative Policy Framework, created in America, identifies narrative framing strategies and measures the role of media in policy change. This research builds on the literature of existing case studies in the United States to test this framework on extreme weather incidents in BC and Alberta. In the Canadian context, the political landscape varies between provinces and over time, as eras of environmentalism tend to alternate with times of economic hardship.

By looking at British Columbia and Alberta wildfires, this research examines how the media frames these stories to determine whether they are seen as climate change incidents or not and contributes to the understanding of how media framing compares between Canadian jurisdictions and in contrast to the American state-level examples.