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Theorizing the enactment of mediatized environmental conflict


Hutchins, B and Lester, EA, Theorizing the enactment of mediatized environmental conflict, The International Communication Gazette, 77, (4) pp. 337-358. ISSN 1748-0485 (2015) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 The Authors

DOI: doi:10.1177/1748048514568765


Contemporary ‘mediatized environmental conflict’ involves complex interactions between (i) activist strategies and campaigns, (ii) journalism practices and news reporting, (iii) formal politics and decision-making processes, and (iv) industry activities and trade. This article theorizes how these interactions occur, drawing on evidence produced by a nine-year period of investigation into environmental media practices, content and technologies. Indicative of power dynamics in a globalized world, mediatized environmental conflict is enacted by the events and negotiations that occur at the ‘switching points’ between the four identified spheres of action. The conflicting messages, representations, debates, and practices that dynamically constitute these switching points are how environmental conflicts are contested, bringing together interlocking networks of media, political, and economic power. These networks traverse the local, national, and transnational in varying degrees depending on the particular issue or site in question. The groups and decision-makers who exercise greatest influence in the midst of conflict are those able to determine what is made visible to opponents and wider publics, meaning that both ‘mediated visibility’ and ‘invisibility’ are important strategic resources in battles over the environment conducted in media saturated social worlds.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Environmental activism, environmental journalism, environmental media, environmental politics, mediatized conflict, mediated visibility, switching points
Research Division:Language, Communication and Culture
Research Group:Communication and media studies
Research Field:Communication and media studies not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Culture and Society
Objective Group:Communication
Objective Field:The media
UTAS Author:Lester, EA (Professor Libby Lester)
ID Code:98426
Year Published:2015
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (DP1095173)
Web of Science® Times Cited:37
Deposited By:School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2015-02-16
Last Modified:2017-12-14

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