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Climate Media Frames

Climate Media Frames

Main application:
University of Applied Sciences St. Pölten

Scientific management:
Franziska Bruckner (University of Applied Sciences St. Pölten)

Project partner:
Ulrich Schwarz-Gräber (Institute of Rural History (IRH))

Research field:
Geistes-, Sozial- und Kulturwissenschaften

Project-ID: FTI20-024
Project start: 01. May 2022
Runtime: 36 months / ongoing
Funding amount: € 288.515,00

Brief summary

While there are already a number of measures in place to address climate change itself, one central question has not been subject to extensive research yet. What do the media actually refer to when talking about climate change? How is the issue framed and contextualized and what is its historical genealogy in our media landscape? Ecological initiatives and measures which help to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions often lack acceptance by the broader public or even face strong resistance from stakeholders and pressure groups. Research on social movements has shown that the public framing of their concerns is essential to their success. In our project Climate Media Frames, we examine two cases of ecological innovations which caused serious public debate in the media in Lower Austria: the soya bean and wind turbines. Both initiatives were constantly framed and reframed in recent decades with crucial and changing consequences for their acceptance. Combining different approaches from sociology, film studies and history, we will thoroughly analyse and reconstruct these processes. With this project, we address challenges at four different levels: First, we expect to gain new insights into the process of framing climate change and, thereby, contribute to an emerging field of research in sociology as well as in media research and history. Second, we study two cases which have been neglected in research on climate change communication so far: the soya bean and wind turbines. Third, in combining methodologies from three different disciplines, we aim at developing a new multimodal tool for analyzing media frames which are applied to both textual and audiovisual formats. Finally, we integrate important stakeholders such as journalists and filmmakers as well as experts on climate research and environmental law to gain insight into their practise and inform their future work with the project results. Hence, the project aims to create more awareness for the mediation processes and the associated action spaces.
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