Syme: we should trust communities

Posted on July 23, 2010


This week I went to two talks by Professor Geoff Syme from Edith Cowan. He presented a social psychological approach to climate change and water allocation.

In the first talk Syme developed a model of factors affecting support for Climate Change policy. The model includes knowledge, awareness of consequences, personal pro-environmental norms, personal and societal efficacy and so on. They then tested this model with a large study of household perceptions in Western Australia.

An important finding is the relationship between personal efficacy and societal efficacy – in short: there is a big disjunction between what we believe we can do ourselves, and what the leaderships thinks we a capable of. Syme argues strongly that we should trust communities.

The resultant structural equation model shows significant pathways.  Factors affecting support for include: knowledge, ethics, awareness of consequences, risk preceptors and strength of belief.

Second talk:  community benefits as framework

Posted in: psychology