Women wiser than men on green issues

Discussion in 'Members Corner' started by ajtr, Sep 17, 2010.

  1. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

    Oct 2, 2009
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    Women believe in global warming more than men
    Washington: Women tend to believe in the scientific consensus on global warming more than men, finds a recent study.
    Women wearing masks take part in a global warming and climate refugee awareness rally organized by Oxfam Bangladesh in Dhaka

    The findings challenge common perceptions that men are more scientifically literate, said sociologist Aaron M. McCright at the Michigan State University in the US.

    "Men still claim they have a better understanding of global warming than women, even though women's beliefs align much more closely with the scientific consensus," said McCright.

    A woman holds a sign during a protest on climate change in central Sydney

    The study is one of the first to focus in-depth on how the genders think about climate change, reports the journal Population and Environment.

    Understanding how the genders think about the environment is important on several fronts, said McCright, who calls climate change "the most expansive environmental problem facing humanity," according to a Michigan State University release.

    A woman stands next to a Prius at a motor show in Jakarta

    "Does this mean women are more likely to buy energy-efficient appliances and hybrid vehicles than men," he said. "Do they vote for different political candidates? Do they talk to their children differently about global warming?"

    McCright analysed eight years of data from Gallup's annual environment poll that asked fairly basic questions about climate change knowledge and concern.

    A demonstrator scuffles with police near Heathrow Airport during climate change protest

    He said the gender divide on concern about climate change was not explained by the roles that men and women perform such as whether they were homemakers, parents or employed full time.

    Instead, he said the gender divide likely is explained by "gender socialisation."

    According to this theory, boys in the US learn that masculinity emphasises detachment, control and mastery.


    A feminine identity, on the other hand, stresses attachment, empathy and care - traits that may make it easier to feel concern about the potential dire consequences of global warming, McCright said.

    "Women and men think about climate change differently. And when scientists or policymakers are communicating about climate change with the general public, they should consider this rather than treating the public as one big monolithic audience," he said.

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