Support, Opposition, Emotion and Contentious Issue Risk Perception

M. Bourassa, K. Doraty, L. Berdahl, Jana Fried, S. Bell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)
25 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Purpose – Research on emotion in the context of risk perception has historically focused on negative emotions, and has emphasized the effect of these negative emotions on the perception of risk amongst those who oppose (rather than support) contentious issues. Drawing on theory, the purpose of this paper is to hypothesize that both positive and negative emotions are correlated with risk perceptions regarding contentious public issues and that this occurs amongst supporters and opponents alike. Design/methodology/approach – The paper explores the relationship between emotions and perceived risk through consideration of the highly contentious case of nuclear energy in Saskatchewan, Canada. The analysis uses data from a representative telephone survey of 1,355 residents. Findings – The results suggest that positive emotions, like negative emotions, are related to nuclear energy risk perceptions. Emotions are related to risk perception amongst both supporters and opponents. Research limitations/implications – The data set’s limited number of emotion measures and single public issue focus, combined with the survey’s cross-sectional design, make this research exploratory in nature. Future research should incorporate multiple positive emotions, explore opposition, and support across a range of contentious public issues, and consider experimental models to assess causal relationships. Practical implications – The paper offers insights into how public sector managers must be cognizant of the emotional underpinnings of risk perceptions amongst both supporters and opponents of contentious public issues. Originality/value – This paper builds on and expands previous work by considering both positive and negative emotions and both supporters and opponents of contentious issues.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-216
JournalInternational Journal of Public Sector Management
Volume29
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Fingerprint

risk perception
opposition
emotion
nuclear energy
public sector
methodology
public
telephone
Canada
manager
resident

Keywords

  • Risk perception
  • Risk management
  • Public attitudes
  • Emotion
  • Contentious issues
  • Nuclear energy

Cite this

Support, Opposition, Emotion and Contentious Issue Risk Perception. / Bourassa, M.; Doraty, K.; Berdahl, L.; Fried, Jana; Bell, S.

In: International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 29, No. 2, 2016, p. 201-216.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Bourassa, M. ; Doraty, K. ; Berdahl, L. ; Fried, Jana ; Bell, S. / Support, Opposition, Emotion and Contentious Issue Risk Perception. In: International Journal of Public Sector Management. 2016 ; Vol. 29, No. 2. pp. 201-216.
@article{a4da0aa890aa48a5b7b0a186501a870d,
title = "Support, Opposition, Emotion and Contentious Issue Risk Perception",
abstract = "Purpose – Research on emotion in the context of risk perception has historically focused on negative emotions, and has emphasized the effect of these negative emotions on the perception of risk amongst those who oppose (rather than support) contentious issues. Drawing on theory, the purpose of this paper is to hypothesize that both positive and negative emotions are correlated with risk perceptions regarding contentious public issues and that this occurs amongst supporters and opponents alike. Design/methodology/approach – The paper explores the relationship between emotions and perceived risk through consideration of the highly contentious case of nuclear energy in Saskatchewan, Canada. The analysis uses data from a representative telephone survey of 1,355 residents. Findings – The results suggest that positive emotions, like negative emotions, are related to nuclear energy risk perceptions. Emotions are related to risk perception amongst both supporters and opponents. Research limitations/implications – The data set’s limited number of emotion measures and single public issue focus, combined with the survey’s cross-sectional design, make this research exploratory in nature. Future research should incorporate multiple positive emotions, explore opposition, and support across a range of contentious public issues, and consider experimental models to assess causal relationships. Practical implications – The paper offers insights into how public sector managers must be cognizant of the emotional underpinnings of risk perceptions amongst both supporters and opponents of contentious public issues. Originality/value – This paper builds on and expands previous work by considering both positive and negative emotions and both supporters and opponents of contentious issues.",
keywords = "Risk perception, Risk management, Public attitudes, Emotion, Contentious issues, Nuclear energy",
author = "M. Bourassa and K. Doraty and L. Berdahl and Jana Fried and S. Bell",
year = "2016",
doi = "10.1108/IJPSM-10-2015-0172",
language = "English",
volume = "29",
pages = "201--216",
journal = "International Journal of Public Sector Management",
issn = "0951-3558",
publisher = "Emerald",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Support, Opposition, Emotion and Contentious Issue Risk Perception

AU - Bourassa, M.

AU - Doraty, K.

AU - Berdahl, L.

AU - Fried, Jana

AU - Bell, S.

PY - 2016

Y1 - 2016

N2 - Purpose – Research on emotion in the context of risk perception has historically focused on negative emotions, and has emphasized the effect of these negative emotions on the perception of risk amongst those who oppose (rather than support) contentious issues. Drawing on theory, the purpose of this paper is to hypothesize that both positive and negative emotions are correlated with risk perceptions regarding contentious public issues and that this occurs amongst supporters and opponents alike. Design/methodology/approach – The paper explores the relationship between emotions and perceived risk through consideration of the highly contentious case of nuclear energy in Saskatchewan, Canada. The analysis uses data from a representative telephone survey of 1,355 residents. Findings – The results suggest that positive emotions, like negative emotions, are related to nuclear energy risk perceptions. Emotions are related to risk perception amongst both supporters and opponents. Research limitations/implications – The data set’s limited number of emotion measures and single public issue focus, combined with the survey’s cross-sectional design, make this research exploratory in nature. Future research should incorporate multiple positive emotions, explore opposition, and support across a range of contentious public issues, and consider experimental models to assess causal relationships. Practical implications – The paper offers insights into how public sector managers must be cognizant of the emotional underpinnings of risk perceptions amongst both supporters and opponents of contentious public issues. Originality/value – This paper builds on and expands previous work by considering both positive and negative emotions and both supporters and opponents of contentious issues.

AB - Purpose – Research on emotion in the context of risk perception has historically focused on negative emotions, and has emphasized the effect of these negative emotions on the perception of risk amongst those who oppose (rather than support) contentious issues. Drawing on theory, the purpose of this paper is to hypothesize that both positive and negative emotions are correlated with risk perceptions regarding contentious public issues and that this occurs amongst supporters and opponents alike. Design/methodology/approach – The paper explores the relationship between emotions and perceived risk through consideration of the highly contentious case of nuclear energy in Saskatchewan, Canada. The analysis uses data from a representative telephone survey of 1,355 residents. Findings – The results suggest that positive emotions, like negative emotions, are related to nuclear energy risk perceptions. Emotions are related to risk perception amongst both supporters and opponents. Research limitations/implications – The data set’s limited number of emotion measures and single public issue focus, combined with the survey’s cross-sectional design, make this research exploratory in nature. Future research should incorporate multiple positive emotions, explore opposition, and support across a range of contentious public issues, and consider experimental models to assess causal relationships. Practical implications – The paper offers insights into how public sector managers must be cognizant of the emotional underpinnings of risk perceptions amongst both supporters and opponents of contentious public issues. Originality/value – This paper builds on and expands previous work by considering both positive and negative emotions and both supporters and opponents of contentious issues.

KW - Risk perception

KW - Risk management

KW - Public attitudes

KW - Emotion

KW - Contentious issues

KW - Nuclear energy

U2 - 10.1108/IJPSM-10-2015-0172

DO - 10.1108/IJPSM-10-2015-0172

M3 - Article

VL - 29

SP - 201

EP - 216

JO - International Journal of Public Sector Management

JF - International Journal of Public Sector Management

SN - 0951-3558

IS - 2

ER -