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Engaged journalism and climate change: lessons from an audience-led, locally focused Australian collaboration

Nettlefold, J ORCID: 0000-0002-8703-8639 and Pecl, GT ORCID: 0000-0003-0192-4339 2020 , 'Engaged journalism and climate change: lessons from an audience-led, locally focused Australian collaboration' , Journalism Practice , pp. 1-16 , doi: 10.1080/17512786.2020.1798272.

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Strengthening media coverage of climate change is a top news and societal priority. The magnitude and impact of global warming and rising sea levels is challenging to communicate, and to comprehend, at global and local scales. Media efforts are frustrated by a myriad of factors, including increased audience reliance on social media for news and information and how that can be compromised by brevity or misinformation. Scientific complexity, and political and cultural conflict, along with psychological factors also shape how people engage with climate issues. The situation is exacerbated by a dramatic decline in the number of print and TV local news outlets and loss of journalism jobs, and rising consumer news avoidance and public distaste for negative coverage. Curious Climate is an engaged journalism experiment by Australia’s public broadcaster, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), in collaboration with scientific organisations in the island state of Tasmania. The ABC asked the public for climate change questions which were answered with content and events led by scientists. Survey data from audiences and journalists contributes empirical evidence on how such new approaches to audience-led local journalism can deliver relevant local news, expand audiences, and provide trusted, relevant sources of information on complex issues.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Nettlefold, J and Pecl, GT
Keywords: climate change, engaged journalism, Hearken, local journalism, participatory journalism, science communication
Journal or Publication Title: Journalism Practice
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1751-2786
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/17512786.2020.1798272
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2020 Routledge

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