1st Edition

Environmental Risk Communication in China Actors, Issues, and Governance

By Jia Dai, Fanxu Zeng Copyright 2022
    308 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    308 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The role of media is becoming increasingly important as globalization has developed. Given fast social transformation and technological development in China, the consequent environmental and health risks demand citizens integrate the communication and prevention of such risks as a significant part of their daily life.

    This book systematically discusses the communication process of typical environmental risk issues, and the complex interaction among multiple actors, including the public, media, experts, non-governmental organizations, and government in contemporary China. From a media-centered perspective, it applies major theories in the field of environmental and risk communication, and uses a variety of empirical research methods to unravel the complicated and unique experience of communication and governance. Combining theoretical reflections with real-life examples of Chinese scenarios, the authors not only encourage a dialogue between Western and Chinese academia but also inspire students and practitioners to apply risk communication theories to solving real-life problems.

    The book will appeal to students, scholars, and practitioners of risk and environmental communication studies.

    Introduction: Why Study Environmental Risk Communication in China? Part I: The Public. 1. The public perception of risks. 2. Environmental Activism and Political Opportunities. 3. Rumors in Urban Environmental Contention. Part II: The Media. 4. The Media Framing of Environmental Risks. 5. The Overlap of Official and Public Discourses 6. The Discourse Transition from Democratic Pragmatism to Administrative Rationalism. Part III: The Experts. 7. Experts’ Roles in Risk Communication. 8. Competition Among Risk Communities and Risk Stories. Part IV: The NGOs. 9. NGOs’ Publicity Strategies and Media Logic. 10. Frame Alignment and Environmental Advocacy Part V: The Government. 11. Lack of Trust and Risk Communication Failure 12. Cooptation of Urban Protests in Through the Media. 13. The Central-local Differences in Environmental Advocacy. Conclusion: Rethinking Environmental Risk Communication and Governance in China.


    Jia Dai is an associate professor at the School of Journalism and Communication, Tsinghua University, China. Her research interests include environmental and risk communication, new media and social transformation.

    Fanxu Zeng is an associate professor at the School of Journalism and Communication, Tsinghua University, China. His research areas are political communication, media and civil society, and environmental communication.