Post-doctoral researcher Hausmann Anna

181900 €

Assessing public perceptions of the global environmental crisis on social media

Tieteellinen tutkimus / siihen pohjautuva työ | Nelivuotinen

A topical and unaddressed research question is how people perceive the global environmental crisis on digital environments, in order to find ways to foster collective sustainability actions to tackle biodiversity loss and climate change. Social media platforms have become crucial communication channels for sharing information and for opening public debates, as well as for influencing and forming opinions, within and across geographical borders. In this project, I aim to use social media data to understand how the environmental crisis is perceived and represented in virtual social environments by: assessing patterns of public attention and topics of discussion around climate change and biodiversity loss on social media at the global level; characterizing how the image of the crisis (information provided, emotions attached, solutions proposed) is framed in video-blogs and who are the actors leading the discussions; and assessing public opinions around the crisis in relation to social media use, using Finland as a case study. I will follow an interdisciplinary, mixed method approach, combining quantitative big data, with in-depth qualitative data analyses to assess people’s attitudes and preferences. This project will help reveal the diversity of people’s perceptions towards the crisis, the attention it receives, how it is framed, and what the main topics of concerns and discourses are on social media. In addition, it will provide evidence on the role of social media in rising awareness and in fostering collective responses to the environmental crisis, unveiling opportunities and challenges to inspire just global sustainability actions.