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Changing political climates: Chinese environmental journalism and sustainable development

February 25, 2014 - 10:15-12:00

Talk by Sam Geall, Research Fellow, Low-carbon innovation in China, SPRU – Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex and Executive Editor, chinadialogue.net.
Abstract: In the People’s Republic of China, the world’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide, the new leadership has made “Beautiful China” and “Ecological Civilization” two of their most prominent official slogans and enshrined sustainable development as core state policy. This  drive for “low-carbon development,” like climate change more broadly, reveals a set of social, ecological and political concerns with interlocking, complex and uncertain dynamics. How we frame such dynamic systems affects the political approaches that are taken to sustainability. Exploring how Chinese environmental journalists make framing decisions around the science and politics of climate change helps to illustrate how reporters can find spaces for political engagement in a restrictive and changeable media and governance environment, one that not only reflects a changing history of attitudes towards the environment in China, but also an international arena dominated by technocratic and managerial approaches to sustainability. Faced with these challenges, journalists have found sophisticated ways to map the complex interactions of human and natural systems presented by climate change – and have addressed uncertainties in a fashion that points towards more open and plural pathways to sustainability.
Venue: Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Scheelevägen 15B, Room Alfa 1010, Lund.


Changing political climates: Chinese environmental journalism and sustainable development


February 25, 2014