12/21/2018 1 Comment
Our new paper on flood perceptions
Our new paper on how physical geography influences perceptions of flooding just got published online in the Journal of Hydrology (impact factor: 4.405). Here is the abstract of this paper:
"How does physical history of flood-related hazards affect individuals’ perceptions? The present study represents a unique effort to understand perceptions of flood hazards in light of the geographic background. Situated in Alabama, the United States, the cities of Mobile and Huntsville display two different physical geographic contexts. Despite one being a coastal city (Mobile) and the other being an inland city, both are similarly vulnerable to flooding. We first present results of historical analyses of heavy precipitation in both cities and analysis of storm surge history in the city of Mobile. We then report results of both descriptive statistical and inferential statistical analyses based on a two-city residents’ survey that was conducted in the spring of 2016. We find that residents in both cities are able to connect the particular natural hazard of flooding with their physical environments. Residents in both cities are influenced by their perceptions of precipitation when making assessments of flooding. Despite the fact that Huntsville has not experienced heavy precipitation events as much as Mobile in recent history, residents of Huntsville tend to link heavy rainfall – the most frequent cause of flooding in that city, with flooding. In contrast, residents of Mobile tend to link hurricanes, more particularly hurricane number, with flooding. These results show that people are attuned to their physical environments and take into consideration their personal observations when forming perceptions of natural hazards. More studies need to be conducted to further investigate the dynamics of physical exposure to hazards and risk perceptions in other geographic areas."
I just published one analysis article on extreme weather and American public opinion towards climate change on the Monkey Cage in Washington Post . Here is one paragraph:
"Here is what is going on: The baseline probabilities of Democrats’ and Republicans’ perceptions of climate change and extreme weather are different. To illustrate, imagine that the probability that someone in Party A believes in human-made climate change may be 80 percent, while that probability for someone in Party B may be only 30 percent. What my research finds is that extreme weather events can change that baseline probability upward, regardless of partisanship or ideology. That change may be more dramatic for those in Party A than Party B. Nevertheless, the change does occur; extreme weather can move the needle."