2017 Canadian Political Science Association

Annual Conference Programme

Ryerson University
  Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences: May 27 - June 2
  The CPSA conference dates within Congress are Tuesday, May 30 to Thursday, June 1.

All members are invited to attend the
2017 Annual General Meeting to be held on
May 31, 2017 at Ryerson University.

Time: 01:00pm to 02:00pm | Location: HEI-201 (Heidelberg Centre)

May 31, 2017

Time: Cocktails available at 6:00 pm; Dinner from 6:30 pm - 10:30 pm |
   Location: Dim Sum King (421 Dundas Street West, Toronto)


Law and Public Policy

Session: D12(b) - Workshop - Environmental Politics: Media & Environmental Politics

Date: Jun 1, 2017 | Time: 10:30am to 12:00pm | Location: VIC-608 (Victoria Building)| iCal iOS / Outlook

Chair/Présidente: Andrea Olive (University of Toronto)

Discussant/Commentatrice: Sarah Martin (Memorial University)

Participants & Authors/Auteurs:

Mathieu Landriault (Univeristy of Ottawa) : Framing the Consequences of Global Warming for Canadian Arctic Sovereignty, 2000-2005
Abstract: Global warming has been at the center of multiple political discourses for the past two decades. Although the anthropogenic nature of global warming is accepted widely, the consequences and impacts brought about by this phenomena are still undefined and subject to various interpretations. This uncertainty makes the study of competing frames a relevant and compelling endeavour. More specifically, the prevalence of issue frames in the media could inform our understanding of both the dominant frames of reference available in the public sphere and of the variables influencing the use of one frame at the detriment of another. As such, this presentation will look at how global Canadian Arctic sovereignty (CAS) was framed from 2000 to 2005, a time when global warming effect on CAS claims was hotly debated. To summarize, one group of experts had predicted that CAS would be at risk soon if no additional surveillance and control measures were to be implemented whereas another group of analysts claimed CAS was not on thinning ice. Looking at 15 Canadian newspapers and 74 journalistic articles, we perform a content analysis of all external expert opinion quoted or paraphrased in these articles to figure out which assessment was the most pervasive in Canadian newspapers. A second objective is to conduct an assessment of the reasons which led one frame to be more dominant than the other.

Erick Lachapelle (Université de Montréal) : Politics, Media Attention and the Framing of Energy East
Abstract: The North American continent is covered in an extensive network of energy pipelines that criss-cross inter-provincial, inter-state and international borders. While largely invisible to the public, proposals for the building of new energy pipelines have become a flashpoint for political controversy in recent years. An example is Trans Canada’s Energy East pipeline proposal that is expected to take 1110 thousand barrels per day (TBD) of oil from Western Canada through Eastern Canada largely for export abroad. To date, the proposal has been framed as a debate between jobs and the economy vs. local risks and global climate change. In this context, this paper analyzes results from a series of framing experiments designed to test the persuasiveness of different arguments made for and against the Energy East pipeline, administered to three nationally representative samples of the Canadian populations in the Fall of 2014, 2015 and 2016. Results demonstrate that arguments invoking localized and immediate risks are more persuasive than arguments invoking broader and diffuse economic benefits and environmental concerns. Moreover, we find that the power of these framing effects is conditioned by subject’s level of familiarity with these debates, as well as the presence of competing frames. These findings have implications for the literature on framing as well as for policy actors currently engaged in the debate over new pipeline construction in North America.

Heather Millar (University of Toronto) : Framing Risk: Examining the Influence of Risk Narratives on Elite Learning and Public Mobilization I
Abstract: This study advances an analytical framework for understanding the influence of risk narratives in Canadian energy policy processes. The paper distinguishes four different types of risk narratives, each of which emerge from different configurations of economic and political factors. The paper contends that once dominant risk narratives have crystalized in media reports, policy documents, and among policy elites, these narratives shape the likelihood of policy elites engaging in instrumental, social, or political learning (Hall 1993; May 1992). The study tests the framework by examining four provincial cases of hydraulic fracturing policy in Canada from 2008-2014, namely British Columbia, Alberta, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. Based on discourse analysis of over 800 news articles from four provincial papers, examination of regulatory and policy documents in each province, and 25 key informant interviews with bureaucrats, politicians, industry representatives and environmental advocates, the study probes the plausibility of the framework and presents avenues for future research on risk frames in environmental politics

Milan Ilnyckyj (University of Toronto) : Media Analysis of Resistence Movements: Keystone XL and North Gateway Pipeline Case Studies
Abstract: Resistance movements against the TransCanada Keystone XL (KXL) and Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline (NGP) are emblematic of the contentious politics of climate change and energy in Canada and the U.S. An important part of both campaigns has been trying to attract media coverage which might shift public and elite opinion. Also, analysis of media coverage should help reveal the networks of organizations and individuals involved in pipeline resistance, as well as the public narratives about their motivations and the political importance of their activities (for instance, local land and water fights versus a global climate fight). In a political context where the comfortable centrist position is that meaningful climate change action can be reconciled with new fossil fuel development (as argued by Obama and Trudeau), anti-pipeline movements represent an important normative and practical challenge to the current North American political leadership. Efforts from both pipeline proponents and opponents have sought to craft emotionally evocative narratives, including through representations of their positions as 'grassroots' and representative of ordinary people, as well as through the theatrical dimension of protest, non-violent direct action, and civil disobedience. My paper will undertake a detailed media analysis of coverage of the KXL and NGP projects through Factiva and Canadian Newsstand, identifying individuals and organizations that have been involved in opposing each pipeline; identifying trends and variation in the types, volume, and tone of media coverage that each movement has generated; and interpreting the narratives being contested between pipeline infrastructure proponents, opponents, and decision-makers

Paper or Poster / Communication ou Présentation visuelle

How environmental issues are framed and discussed is an important line of inquiry for political scientists, across issue areas. This panel invites papers on media analysis. The focus of these papers is open, with papers anticipated to address multiple theoretical and empirical aspects of framing and discourse, including (but not limited to): strategies of framing; the effects of competing frames; and methodologies for discursive and content analysis.