Disruptive hazards and climates: making sense of ambiguity

Jeffers, J.M (2017) Disruptive hazards and climates: making sense of ambiguity. In: Conference of Irish Geographers, 4 - 6 May 2017, University College Cork.


This paper explores the ambiguous ways in which local actors interpret weather related hazards and climate change. It draws on evidence from qualitative analysis of interviews with decision-makers and stakeholders in the cities of Dublin, Cork and Galway to examine how hazards and climate impacts are interpreted in ways that appear contradictory including: as both a threat and an opportunity, as a present reality but also located in an uncertain future, and as a process that is spatially near at hand yet also distant and remote. These messy interpretations emerge from encounters and experiences that bring together material and socio-cultural realities of weather and climate. Climate change is encountered as a material reality through weather events that are viewed as unusual. It is also experienced as a social, cultural and political reality shaped through a wide range of information sources. Ambiguous interpretations present numerous challenges for decision-making and policy. They may require the development of new approaches to decision-making that are improvised, provisional and reflexive.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2017 10:32
Last Modified: 12 Jun 2017 10:32
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