The role of media between expert and lay knowledge: A study of Iberian media coverage on climate change

Individuals play a crucial role in combating climate change, but high levels of acknowledgment and engagement are needed to lead to changes toward more sustainable behaviours. In this aspect, media plays an important role in shaping individuals’ awareness about climate change. This study aims to analyse Iberian media coverage about climate change to further discuss its influence on the public’s engagement with the subject. A total of 449 news were collected from Iberian newspapers. Their characteristics were analysed through quantitative content analysis. Data shows important journalistic bias toward a national framing, mainly focusing on drought and its impact on agriculture. The debate is focused on technological and political discourses. The gaps found on the Iberian media coverage may contribute to public’s low levels of acknowledgement and engagement, not enhancing the possibility of change in individuals’ behaviours for more sustainable actions.