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Coping with scarcity: The construction of the water conservation imperative in newspapers (1999–2018)

Abstract : As water-stressed areas are expanding worldwide due to climate change, water conservation has become an important tool for managing water resources in drought contexts. Within a political ecology framework, our research questions the success story of water conservation. To do so, we conducted a quantitative textual analysis of 520 daily local press articles dealing with drought and water issues in Phoenix and Tucson (Arizona, USA). Using two open-access lexicometric software, our analysis traces the rise of the water conservation narrative in the press. Our results show how newspapers can become an instrument of public policies to work towards their social acceptance. Moreover, water conservation is framed as a consensual tool. It reassures that threats associated with water scarcity will be successfully managed to sustain urban growth in arid regions. In this sense, water conservation operates following a logic of fix, in line with the successive hydrosocial fixes that helped the development of arid lands and does not question inherited power structures in water management.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03412019
Contributor : Anne-Lise Boyer Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Tuesday, November 2, 2021 - 5:16:22 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 1, 2022 - 3:43:48 AM

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Anne-Lise Boyer, Yves-François Le Lay, Pascal Marty. Coping with scarcity: The construction of the water conservation imperative in newspapers (1999–2018). Global Environmental Change, 2021, 71, pp.102387. ⟨10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2021.102387⟩. ⟨hal-03412019⟩

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