Aaron M. McCright's research while affiliated with Michigan State University and other places

Publications (89)

Article
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Stakeholders’ perceptions of barriers to and other ethical concerns about using psychiatric electroceutical interventions (PEIs), interventions that use electrical or magnetic stimuli to treat psychiatric conditions like treatment-resistant depression (TRD), may influence the uptake of these interventions. This study examined such perceptions among...
Article
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Recent research emphasizes the role of psychiatric electroceutical interventions (PEIs), bioelectronic treatments that employ electrical stimulation to affect and modify brain function, to effectively treat psychiatric disorders. We sought to examine attitudes about three PEIs—electroconvulsive therapy, transcranial magnetic stimulation, and deep b...
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Amid a renewed interest in alternatives to psychotherapy and medication to treat depression, there is limited data as to how different stakeholders perceive of the risks and benefits of psychiatric electroceutical interventions (PEIs), including electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and deep brain stimulation (DBS). To address this gap, we conducted 48 s...
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Responding to reports of cases of personality change following deep brain stimulation, neuroethicists have debated the nature and ethical implications of these changes. Recently, this literature has been challenged as being overblown and therefore potentially an impediment to patients accessing needed treatment. We interviewed 16 psychiatrists, 16...
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Psychiatrists play an important role in providing access to psychiatric electrical interventions (PEIs) such as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). As such, their views on these procedures likely influence whether they refer or provide these types of treatments for their clinically depressed patients. Despit...
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Michigan's introduction of mandatory counseling for nonmedical exemptions was associated with decreased nonmedical exemption rates. However, while each of Michigan's 45 local health departments made its own decisions about how to conduct immunization counseling, differences in the burdensomeness of counseling programs was not associated with greate...
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This paper analyzes motivations for coffee roasters to source directly from farmers and how roasters decide whether to use the Direct Trade sustainability label. Direct Trade is an uncertified label connoting an approach wherein roasters negotiate coffee price and quality with farmers without intermediaries, with purported farmer income benefits. W...
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More than three decades of social science research demonstrates environmental issues as important social problems commanding international attention. Although an emerging body of scholarship examines patterns of climate views of general publics worldwide, how these connect to attitudes supportive of renewable energy and energy behavioral intentions...
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A small but growing body of philosophically informed survey work calls into question whether the value-free ideal is a dominant viewpoint among scientists. However, the survey instruments used in these studies have important limitations. Previous work has also made little headway in developing hypotheses that might predict or explain differing view...
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Two between‐subject experiments explored perceived conflict of interest (COI)—operationalized as perceived procedural unfairness—in a hypothetical public–private research partnership to study the health risks of trans fats. Perceived fairness was measured as subjects’ perceptions that health researchers would be willing to listen to a range of voic...
Article
Accurately measuring vaccine acceptance is important, especially under current conditions in which misinformation may increase public anxiety about vaccines and politicize vaccine policies. We integrated substantive knowledge, conceptualization and measurement expertise, and survey design principles to develop an instrument for measuring vaccine ac...
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Scientists who perform environmental research on policy-relevant topics face challenges when communicating about how values may have influenced their research. This study examines how citizens view scientists who publicly acknowledge values. Specifically, we investigate whether it matters: if citizens share or oppose a scientist’s values, if a scie...
Article
The climate literacy movement aspires to help members of the general public understand the global climate system, locate and assess scientifically credible climatic information, communicate about climate change in an educated and objective manner, and make informed and responsible decisions in response to climate-change impacts. When these goals ar...
Data
Stimulus. Study 1 stimulus with manipulated text italicized. (DOCX)
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University scientists conducting research on topics of potential health concern often want to partner with a range of actors, including government entities, non-governmental organizations, and private enterprises. Such partnerships can provide access to needed resources, including funding. However, those who observe the results of such partnerships...
Data
Descriptive statistics from the pre-test of potential research partners. (DOCX)
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Unstandardized direct, indirect, and total effects from structural equation model predicting perceived legitimacy (latent variable) by presence of collaborative partner with perceived procedural fairness (latent variable) as mediator. (DOCX)
Data
Stimulus. Study 2 stimulus with manipulated text italicized. (DOCX)
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Media coverage of scientific studies identifying technological risks generally amplifies public risk perceptions. Yet, if subsequent media coverage reports that those studies have been retracted, are risk perceptions reversed or attenuated? Or, once amplified, do risk perceptions remain elevated? Answering such questions may improve our understandi...
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Given increasing scholarly recognition of the need to better understand the factors that influence identification with or participation in social movements, we build upon recent work that integrates public opinion methods and analytical techniques into social movements research. Specifically, we revise an existing measure of environmental movement...
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US conservatives receive a steady stream of anti-environmental messaging from Republican politicians. However, clean-energy conservatives sending strong counter-messages on energy issues could mobilize moderate conservatives to break away from the dominant right-wing defence of fossil fuels.
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Recent scholarship in human–animal relationships demonstrates that new theoretical insights emerge when these relationships are seriously considered. We suggest that the most prominent measures of values in the environmental decision-making research literature, the Schwartz approach, may not adequately capture key aspects of how individuals value a...
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Decision support tools can aid decision making by systematically incorporating information, accounting for uncertainties, and facilitating evaluation between alternatives. Without user buy-in, however, decision support tools can fail to influence decision-making processes. We surveyed fishery researchers, managers, and fishers affiliated with the L...
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Over the last three decades, climate change has become publicly defined as an important social problem deserving action. A substantial body of social science research examines the patterns of climate change views in the general publics of countries around the world. In this review essay, we identify the strongest and most consistent predictors of k...
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Whether or not there will be a renaissanceöf nuclear power in the near future may depend upon the nature of support for this energy source among citizens and elected officials. Continued examination of the predictors of opposition to nuclear power therefore remains quite policy relevant. While the existing literature finds modest but consistent gen...
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The leading theoretical explanation for the mobilization of organized climate change denial is the Anti-Reflexivity Thesis, which characterizes the climate change denial countermovement as a collective force defending the industrial capitalist system. In this study, I demonstrate that the Anti-Reflexivity Thesis also provides theoretical purchase f...
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Prior research on the influence of various ways of framing anthropogenic climate change (ACC) do not account for the organized ACC denial in the U.S. media and popular culture, and thus may overestimate these frames' influence in the general public. We conducted an experiment to examine how Americans' ACC views are influenced by four promising fram...
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The American public’s environmental, scientific, and civic literacies are generally low. While environmental science courses often recognize the human dimensions of environmental problems and solutions, they typically treat such phenomena as matters of opinion and rarely engage with social scientific ways of knowing. Recently, there has been a push...
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Household energy consumption remains ripe for behavioral intervention, being responsible for an estimated 31% of U.S. CO2 emissions. As researchers attempt to understand the factors that influence household energy efficiency behaviors, we suggest it is important to attend to behavioral plasticity - how the perceived difficulty of behavioral respons...
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Climate change, one of the most important social problems of the twenty-first century, challenges pedagogy to incorporate complex themes from social and biophysical sciences. We propose an approach to a course on “Climate Change and Society” grounded in pedagogical research. Integrating the development of higher-level learning skills into course le...
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There is a strong political divide on climate change in the US general public, with Liberals and Democrats expressing greater belief in and concern about climate change than Conservatives and Republicans. Recent studies find a similar though less pronounced divide in other countries. Its leadership in international climate policy making warrants ex...
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Objective We compare the relative performance of two measures of identification with the environmental movement: a self-identified environmentalist indicator and an environmental movement identity indicator.Methods We utilize data from the March/April 2000–2010 Gallup Polls to examine how these two measures of identification with the environmental...
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There is great benefit in using measures of environmentally significant behaviour - rather than just behavioural intentions or self-reported behaviour - if we are to advance our understanding of the individual and structural factors that influence environmental decision-making. Along these lines, to supplement the use of behavioural intention and s...
Conference Paper
Public support is crucial for responding to climate change and other key sustainability challenges, yet public concerns often diverge from those of the scientific community. Survey research provides useful insights into how the public has processed information about climate change and other environmental issues. But more systematic and sophisticate...
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Research on environmental concern has consistently found that women have modestly stronger pro-environmental values, beliefs, and attitudes than do men. Scholars have proposed and examined several explanations and have found that only a few hypotheses receive somewhat consistent empirical support, including the institutional trust hypothesis. Given...
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Although perceptions of common weather phenomena moderately align with instrumental measurements of such phenomena1, the evidence that weather or climatic conditions influence beliefs about anthropogenic climate change is mixed2–13. This study addresses both foci, which are important to scholars who investigate human–environment interactions and ob...
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The labor and environmental movements have had a complicated relationship with periods of cooperation as well as conflict, but recently there has been increasing collaboration at the national level. Whether such a trend of cooperation can be sustained will partially depend on grassroots-level connections between the two movements. However, there ha...
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Research on environmental concern in the past few decades consistently finds that women express slightly greater environmental concern than men. This pattern is robust across samples, nations, time, and facets of environmental concern measured. In a recent suite of articles analyzing data from a few nationally representative data sets for the U.S....
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Some environmental and religious scholars, religious leaders, and media figures have claimed there has been a “greening of Christianity” in the United States since the mid-1990s. Such a trend would be socially significant, as the integration of Christian values and environmental values may invigorate both domains. Using nationally representative da...
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Since the mid-2000s, U.S. conservative leaders and Republican politicians have stepped up efforts to challenge the reality and seriousness of anthropogenic climate change (ACC). Especially with the rise of the Tea Party in 2009, ACC denial has become something of a litmus test for Republican politicians to prove their conservative bona fides. Two r...
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Since the mid-1960s, many scholars have characterized Western Christianity as at odds with environmentalism and ecological values. Yet since the mid-1990s, many observers claim there has been a "greening of Christianity" in the United States. Using nationally representative data from the 2010 General Social Survey, we analyzed how pro-environmental...
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Compared with men, women often express stronger proenvironmental attitudes and values and more frequently engage in private environmental behaviors (e.g., recycling), but not in public environmental behaviors (e.g., joining a protest about an environmental issue). This study uses the 2010 General Social Survey data to test whether this pattern is d...
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In recent years, some scholars, journalists, and science advocates have promoted broad claims that ‘conservatives distrust science’ or ‘conservatives oppose science’. We argue that such claims may oversimplify in ways that lead to empirical inaccuracies. The Anti-Reflexivity Thesis suggests a more nuanced examination of how political ideology influ...
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While numerous cross-sectional studies find modest gender differences in environmental concern within the general publics of North American and European countries, this pattern has not been examined over time—primarily due to a lack of suitable data. Using twenty-two years of nationally representative survey data from the Swedish general public, we...
Conference Paper
Although, minorities consume fish in greater quantities than the general population, many urban communities are not aware of fishing regulations and management practices. This study explores the cultural divide between fisheries participation and minority populations along the Grand River adjacent to communities in Lansing, MI. Results will be pres...
Article
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Climate change is a complex scientific and social problem. Effectively dealing with it presents an immense challenge, yet educating students about it offers educators in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fruitful opportunities for promoting interdisciplinarity, retaining talented young people in STEM fields and enhancing multi...
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Given the well-documented campaign in the USA to deny the reality and seriousness of anthropogenic climate change (a major goal of which is to “manufacture uncertainty” in the minds of policy-makers and the general public), we examine the influence that perception of the scientific agreement on global warming has on the public’s beliefs about globa...
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Extending existing scholarship on the white male effect in risk perception, we examine whether conservative white males (CWMs) are less worried about the risks of environmental problems than are other adults in the US general public. We draw theoretical and analytical guidance from the identity-protective cognition thesis explaining the white male...
Article
Michigan State University’s Lyman Briggs College (LBC) is a residential, undergraduate college devoted to studying the natural sciences with an understanding of the history, philosophy, and sociology of science. LBC is the longest-running program of its kind at a large U.S. research university and offers its students the close-knit living-learning...
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We examine theoretical arguments explaining gender differences in environmental concern using data from six Gallup surveys in the 2000s. Using confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling, we examine the direct and indirect effects of gender and other key variables on two factors of environmental concern: worry about health-related...
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Even as the consensus over the reality and significance of anthropogenic climate change (ACC) becomes stronger within the scientific community, this global environmental problem is increasingly contested in the political arena and wider society. The spread of debate and contention over ACC from the scientific to socio-political realms has been detr...
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I offer some theoretical insights to help us better understand the moderator effect of political orientation that Larry Hamilton and others have found in recent years. Reflexive modernization theory highlights an emerging tension between those who direct attention to the negative consequences of industrial capitalism such as climate change (e.g., t...
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We examine whether conservative white males are more likely than are other adults in the U.S. general public to endorse climate change denial. We draw theoretical and analytical guidance from the identity-protective cognition thesis explaining the white male effect and from recent political psychology scholarship documenting the heightened system-j...
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We examine political polarization over climate change within the American public by analyzing data from 10 nationally representative Gallup Polls between 2001 and 2010. We find that liberals and Democrats are more likely to report beliefs consistent with the scientific consensus and express personal concern about global warming than are conservativ...
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This study tests theoretical arguments about gender differences in scientific knowledge and environmental concern using 8years of Gallup data on climate change knowledge and concern in the US general public. Contrary to expectations from scientific literacy research, women convey greater assessed scientific knowledge of climate change than do men....
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The American conservative movement is a force of anti-reflexivity insofar as it attacks two key elements of reflexive modernization: the environmental movement and environmental impact science. Learning from its mistakes in overtly attacking environmental regulations in the early 1980s, this counter-movement has subsequently exercised a more subtle...
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Aaron M. McCright is Associate Professor of Sociology in Lyman Briggs College and the Department of Sociology at Michigan State University. His research investigates how interrelationships among scientific developments, political processes, and social dynamics influence society's capacity for recognizing and dealing with environmental degradation a...
Article
This Article analyzes the social bases of climate change knowledge, concern, and policy support, with an emphasis on examining the role of political identification (political ideology and party affiliation). Using survey data from eight nationally representative samples from 2001-2008, this study tests the generalizability of earlier results in thi...
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Objective. We offer an empirical measure of “social movement identity” vis-à-vis the environmental movement. Our measure of environmental movement identity complements existing efforts to measure the ambiguous concept of “environmental identity.” Methods. We utilize data from a 2000 Gallup Poll of 1,004 adults to examine relationships between our m...
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Using six years of Gallup data, we examine the effects of environmental movement identity on several characteristics of environmental problem belief systems within the general public. We find that the environmental problem belief systems of self-identified active participants in the environmental movement exhibit greater consistency, greater consen...
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Social movement scholars argue that movements within the same social movement family represent an ideologically coherent social force driven by an overarching master frame. Yet this claim has thus far been poorly documented. Analyzing public opinion data from a nationally representative April 2000 Gallup Poll, we find substantial evidence of a prog...
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Studies of the social bases of environmental concern over the past 30 years have produced somewhat inconsistent results regarding the effects of sociodemographic variables, such as gender, income, and place of residence. The authors argue that model specification errors resulting from violation of two statistical assumptions (interval-level measure...
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He has published work on power, ideology, social movements, and environmental problems in such journals as Social Problems and Environmental Politics.
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This book facilitates the existing dialogue between community sociologists and environmental sociologists on the ecological and social significance of place, the challenges of local sustainability, and local environmental politics. Even after many years into this general intellectual discussion, much remains to be clarified, defined, explained, and...
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Humans live in social communities that are embedded ecologically within overlapping biophysical environments. The increasing burden that humans have on these environments demands extensive attention from people in all walks of life. This book promotes a dialogue between two related groups of scholars – community sociologists and environmental socio...
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All ethics so far evolved rest upon a single premise: that the individual is a member of a community of interdependent parts.– Aldo Leopold in A Sand County Almanac (1949/1989, p. 203)