Hong Wei and Wang Shuyan, Tsinghua University
Abstract: In recent years, the “smog” problem has aroused wide concern in China. However, people have different perceptions of the severity of air pollution even in similarly polluted environment. Based on a quantitative analysis of Chinese General Social Survey data, air quality index data, news reports in 2013, and multi-site anthropological observations, this paper illustrates that public perception of air pollution is not completely determined by physiological feelings and external environment, but shaped by media, social networks and other socio-cultural factors. The classification system used to distinguish purity and danger, is an important intermediate in constructing public perceptions of air pollution.
Keywords: Air pollution; Risk perception; Smog; Public Understanding of Science
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