The role of scientific knowledge in the public's perceptions of energy technology risks Academic Article uri icon


  • © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. It is important for policy makers to have an accurate understanding of public attitudes toward pressing issues to help inform their decision making. Researchers consistently find that the public's receipt of and correct processing of scientific information and knowledge are essential for its problem solving. Different levels of understanding of specific energy technologies may produce different risk assessments across technologies within this issue domain. How this differential risk assessment occurs and the role that scientific information may play in it is not yet well known. This project seeks to determine the role that perceived and objective scientific knowledge may play in the public's risk assessments of different energy technologies. Our findings suggest that scientific knowledge does temper public risk evaluations of different energy technologies, therefore linking more clearly the connection between science knowledge, scientific trust, and issue problem identification.

altmetric score

  • 2.6

author list (cited authors)

  • Stoutenborough, J. W., & Vedlitz, A.

citation count

  • 31

publication date

  • September 2016