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Research article2017Peer reviewed

An Evaluation of Information Meetings as a Tool for Addressing Fear of Large Carnivores

Johansson, Maria; Frank, Jens; Stoen, Ole-Gunnar; Flykt, Anders

Abstract

Managing authorities in Scandinavia arrange public information meetings when members of the public express fear because wolves or brown bears approach human settlements. This study aimed to increase the understanding of the potential effect of information meetings on self-reported fear of wolves and brown bears. In total, 198 participants completed questionnaires before and after the information meetings. Nine follow-up interviews were held 1 year later. The quantitative analyses revealed that participants who found the information credible reported a significant increase in social trust and a decrease in vulnerability and fear. The qualitative analyses pointed to the importance of information content and meta-communication, for example, nonverbal cues. It is proposed that, among participants who find the information credible, information meetings may change the appraisal of wolves and brown bears, and therefore they might prove useful as an intervention to address fear of these animals.

Keywords

Brown bears; fear; information; interventions; wolves

Published in

Society and Natural Resources
2017, Volume: 30, number: 3, pages: 281-298
Publisher: TAYLOR & FRANCIS INC

        SLU Authors

        Sustainable Development Goals

        SDG4 Quality education

        UKÄ Subject classification

        Fish and Wildlife Management

        Publication identifier

        DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/08941920.2016.1239290

        Permanent link to this page (URI)

        https://res.slu.se/id/publ/94234