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Media Coverage of the Blue Economy in British Newspapers: Sea Blindness and Sustainable Development

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

E-pub ahead of print
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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2/02/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>Geographical Journal
Publication StatusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date2/02/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

The wide acceptance and endorsement of the blue economy by public and private actors can be considered as a positive step toward the sustainable transition of coastal and marine environments. While particular attention needs to be paid to the potential risks posed by the perspective of economic gains resulting from marine exploitation, a large public support is also required to build a sustainable society. The mass media plays a critical role in communicating scientific advances and risks, shaping opinions, and fostering behavioural change. The article discusses the media coverage of the blue economy in British newspapers through a frame analysis. The analysis reveals that the blue economy is largely framed in terms of economic opportunities and weak sustainability, and treated in a very factual, non-critical way. Sea blindness enables to understand the lack of in-depth discussion about the blue economy and its framing as an overtly positive economic opportunity. The findings also suggest that the way the blue economy is represented proceeds from the dominant development discourse that has spread onto the marine space.