Landscapes - People - Global change

Tag: quantitative methods

New chapter: using surveys in critical social acceptance work on renewable energy

The cover of the new Batel & Rudolph-edited volume that contains our chapter on quant methods.

Nice to see a new chapter out this month, Strategies for Integrating Quantitative Methods into Critical Social Acceptance Research, drawing on three different surveys about renewable energy in the last few years with UAlberta colleague John Parkins, one with MES Ellen Chappell, both co-authors. The book is co-edited by Susana Batel and David Rudolph, focusing on ‘critical’ approaches to social acceptance work on renewable energy. While they first approached me to do something on climax thinking, for some reason I can’t quite remember (probably the long delay for that previous chapter to come out), I pitched something on quant methods instead. Our chapter argues that quantitative methods are not anathema to critical approaches: they bring important strengths but call for some creativity in design. The three surveys we used as exemplars covered the national scale, provincial scale (Alberta) and regional scale (Tantramar/Chignecto), and each sought to reach beyond methodological individualism and  Likert questions by engaging with place and materiality, looking relationally, exploring situated norms, forcing trade-offs, using vignettes or scenarios and enquiring about emotions. Now that I can see the impressive full line-up, I can’t wait to get back into the office where I expect my complimentary copy is waiting for me.

New survey in the field on perceptions of flood mapping

Survey notice that will start arriving in mailboxes next week

Survey notice that will start arriving in mailboxes next week

If you get a card that looks like this in your mail, please don’t ignore it. Environmental Science Honours student Samantha Howard is now waiting eagerly for responses to her survey invitation, which will start arriving in the mailboxes of Bridgewater and Liverpool, NS, early next week. She is interested to know how residents feel about the possibility of flood risk mapping being made publicly available for their property, perhaps even required as a disclosure during home sales or rental agreements.

We are sending this survey invitation out via a Canada Post admail postcard, to avoid multiple handling and any envelope licking at this time of COVID, which I have never tried before. We hope for a good response rate so Samantha can analyze the results statistically, and are grateful to those who are willing to give their time. The survey closes on February 14, to leave enough time for analysis and writing before Sam’s thesis is due the following month. There are 10 Tim Horton’s gift cards to be given away to respondents who decide to enter our draw at the end of the survey. The first 100 respondents have a 1 in 20 chance of winning a $20 card, the rest go into a draw for 5 $10 cards.

6-month job in bibliometrics and/or statistics

I am offering a 6-month non-student position in my lab (Jan-June 2019), co-funded by Mitacs‘ Career Connect program, for quantitative analysis support across a few SSHRC projects (e.g. sustainable agriculture, renewable energy). Required skills include bibliometrics and/or social science statistical methods. A short description is  here, and a fuller one is on the Mitacs site. Viable applicants should be under 30, have relevant Masters qualifications (Library/Information Science, Statistics, Information Technology, Computer Science, Quantitative Social Science, Social/Environmental Psychology, etc), and be a Canadian citizen, PR or refugee. Please help me spread the word.

The last dam paper (?)

New Brunswick, with dots representing survey respondents, coloured by their Mactaquac preference.

New Brunswick, with dots representing survey respondents, coloured by their Mactaquac preference.

Coincidentally, given the previous post, the last paper out of research that Energy Transitions in Canada undertook on the Mactaquac decision came out today in Water Alternatives. This new open source paper features both qualitative and quantitative analysis of a randomized proportional survey of 500 New Brunswickers implemented back in 2014, before the official public engagement campaign began in earnest. We compare the results of that survey against insights from our qualitative fieldwork with local residents, undertaken in 2013-2014. The paper describes how and why the local and provincial discourses came to align.  It is part of a special issue on dam removal, so thanks to co-editors Chris Sneddon, Régis Barraud, and Marie-Anne Germaine for their hard work on the collection.

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