This interdisciplinary study draws upon science, science and cultural studies and media studies to conduct a qualitative sociological analysis of science news. Comparative analysis of 81 national and state news articles on parasites and drinking water in Australia and New Zealand reveals the 1998 Sydney water crisis is the most newsworthy event in 1996-2007 and offers several examples of the social construction of risk. Using science news, we show news reporting norms, such as newsworthiness, framing, evidence, balancing and objectivity, affect the production of knowledge and perception of risks about water contamination. Acknowledging the limitations of science and media, as producers of 'objective' knowledge, we recommend constituents of each recognise and critically consider how the socio-cultural reality of each institution impacts individual and structural assessments of risk.
|Title of host publication||Public Sociologies|
|Subtitle of host publication||Lessons and Trans-Tasman Comparisons|
|Place of Publication||Auckland, New Zealand|
|Publisher||Department of Sociology, University of Auckland|
|Number of pages||1|
|Publication status||Published - 2007|
|Event||The Australian Sociological Association (TASA)/Sociological Association of Aotearoa New Zealand (SAANZ) Joint Conference - Auckland, New Zealand, New Zealand|
Duration: 04 Dec 2007 → 07 Dec 2007
|Conference||The Australian Sociological Association (TASA)/Sociological Association of Aotearoa New Zealand (SAANZ) Joint Conference|
|Period||04/12/07 → 07/12/07|
Ragusa, A., & Crampton, A. (2007). Are There Parasites In Your H2o? Sociology Of Risk & Science News. In T. McIntosh (Ed.), Public Sociologies: Lessons and Trans-Tasman Comparisons (pp. 10). Department of Sociology, University of Auckland.