Environmental Steps in the Long March of World Politics: Australian Frames of China in the Climate Change Context

By Li Ji and Naren Chitty.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Climate change has risen on the global agenda. It is not limited to the issue of escalating temperature; food and land security, natural disasters, the population problem and other critical issues are germane to it. Environmentally sustainable development needs an updated framework of international trade regulations, economic development model and consumption patterns. Climate change cannot be treated as a stand-alone issue; it has been drawn increasingly into the political and economic agenda. The emerging world order will be constructed under an environmental reality. The UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in 2009 heralded a new reshuffling of the world order. As environmental issues revolve around common human interest, government efforts directed at environmental improvement are of great public concern. Media shifts their attention to policy making and policy on environmental issues, and environmental influences on governance. With media spotlights turned on environmental issues, on the world stage, there are opportunities for international actors to improve or reshape their image through accentuating their ‘green-ness’, in terms of environmental policies and actions. Image reformation and environmental diplomacy are two courses open to nation states, in the context of the contemporary global climate change discourse. The study focuses on Australian national newspapers’ framing of China’s environmental image at the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, aiming to resolve two research questions employing framing analysis: 1) What is the environmental image of China that is portrayed by Australian national newspapers? 2) What can the environmental framing of China in the Australian national newspapers be decoded in a world political context?

Keywords: Australian National Newspaper, Copenhangen Conference, Environmental Image, Framing Analysis, World Politics

The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 3, Issue 3, pp.55-70. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 832.674KB).

Li Ji

PhD candidate, Department of Media, Music, Communication and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Arts, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Li Ji is candidate for a Ph.D in International Communication at Macquarie University in Australia. Her current research project is about examining environmental image of China in the Australian mainstream media and decoding world politics in the emerging environmental discourse. Her research interest is in the construction of national image in the context of bilateral and multilateral environmental cooperation, which covers fields of environmental communication, national image and international relations.

Prof. Naren Chitty

Director of the Soft Power Advocacy and Research Center, Department of International Communication, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Professor Naren Chitty is Foundation Chair in International Communication and Director of the Soft Power Advocacy and Research Center, Sydney, Australia (www.arts.mq.edu.au/ sparc). His Ph.D. in International Relations is from the School of International Service, American University, Washington D.C. He is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of International Communication (jic.tbi.com.au). He is a former Secretary General of the International Association of Media & Communication Research. Professor Chitty was a senior diplomat in Washington D.C. during the Reagan Administration.

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