Past event

Land Management in Scotland -- From Urban Deer to Wind Energy STACEES Research Seminar - Showcasing PhD Projects by Abi Whitefield and Jessica Hogan (School of Geography and Sustainable Development, St Andrews)

‘Putting Community Back into Community Energy: Does Ownership Affect Support and Perceived Justice for Wind Energy in Scotland?' by Jessica Hogan (PhD candidate, School of Geography and Sustainable Development)

Wind energy often faces opposition from locals which can stall or halt projects permanently. While community ownership of wind energy has been found to increase acceptance, limited research has explored why. Here, Jessica will share her team's research, which compares communities' attitudes toward onshore wind energy using a mail-out survey across different community benefit schemes in Scotland.

One-way ANOVAs identified, on average, that those with some form of ownership tend to support the wind development more, feel more involved, perceive more benefits that are fairly distributed, perceive fewer risks, and support their own benefit schemes. These results support the contention that community ownership leads to greater acceptance, but also that it is only one of several factors shaping public acceptance. Specifically, energy justice aspects may be of equal or greater importance than the type of ownership.

‘Scotland's urban deer: understanding perceptions to shape policymaking' by Abi Whitefield (PhD candidate, School of Geography and Sustainable Development)

The problem of deer populations in urban areas of Scotland has become an increasingly pressing issue in recent years, due to their growing populations and resultant encroachment into urban environments. As a result, human-deer interaction has increased, with conflict between the two resulting in the possible need for deer management.

A paucity of previous research means that little is known about these urban deer populations, with perceptions of both urban deer and urban deer management poorly understood. Consequently, policies are being shaped without a robust evidence-base. Abi's PhD research aims to understand the perceptions and experiences of experts, local authority staff, local councillors and the public regarding urban deer and their management, aiming to shape policymaking. This talk will explain the main debates surrounding the topic and highlight progress made thus far.

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