Climate change as an involuntary exposure: A comparative risk perception study from six countries across the global development gradient

Academic Article


  • Climate change has been referred to as an involuntary exposure, meaning people do not voluntarily put themselves at risk for climate-related ill health or reduced standard of living. The purpose of this study is to examine people‚Äôs risk perceptions and related beliefs regarding (1) the likelihood of different risks occurring at different times and places and (2) collective (government) responsibility and personal efficacy in dealing with climate change, as well as (3) explore the ways in which climate risk may be amplified when posed against individual health and well-being. Previous research on this topic has largely focused on one community or one nation state, and so a unique characteristic of this study is the comparison between six different city (country) sites by their development and national wealth. Here, we collected 401 surveys from Phoenix (USA), Brisbane (Australia), Wellington (New Zealand), Shanghai (China), Viti Levu (Fiji), and Mexico City (Mexico). Results suggest that the hyperopia effect characterized the sample from each study site but was more pronounced in developed sites, suggesting that the more developed sites employ a broader perspective when approaching ways to mitigate their risk against climate-related health and well-being impacts.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Gartin M; Larson KL; Brewis A; Stotts R; Wutich A; White D; Bray MD
  • Volume

  • 17
  • Issue

  • 6