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Title: Nuclear power: sex differences in public opinion

This study attempts to determine the factors that account for the fact that women are both more opposed and uncertain than men concerning the further development of nuclear energy. To that end, data from four national opinion surveys covering the period 1975 to 1979 are employed. Log-linear techniques are used in the analyses. Two plausible explanations for women's greater aversion to nuclear power are presented. The marginality explanation attributes the differential support of men and women for nuclear power to the differential positions which they occupy in the economic, political, and technical spheres within society. Because men hold more central positions in these areas, it is postulated that they will perceive a greater need for additional energy and continued economic growth, believe that the advantages of nuclear power toward these goals are greater, and be more confident in applications of nuclear technology. The fact that men express more favorable attitudes toward nuclear power is thus to be explained by these factors. The safety explanation attributes the sex difference to a greater concern on the part of women about the safety of using nuclear fission to generate electricity. The general thrust of this arguments is that women's greater concern for safetymore » revolves around their reproductive and nurturant roles, and the protection of future generations. Uncertainty is viewed as a special problem. An explanation for women's greater uncertainty, which attributes the difference to a sex-typed expectation concerning the formulation and expression of opinions on complex technical issues, is presented.« less
Authors:
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
5685228
Resource Type:
Thesis/Dissertation
Resource Relation:
Other Information: Thesis (Ph. D.)
Publisher:
Univ. of Arizona,Tucson, AZ
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; MEN; ATTITUDES; NUCLEAR POWER; PUBLIC OPINION; WOMEN; SAFETY; SOCIO-ECONOMIC FACTORS; ANIMALS; FEMALES; INSTITUTIONAL FACTORS; MALES; MAMMALS; MAN; POWER; PRIMATES; VERTEBRATES 290600* -- Energy Planning & Policy-- Nuclear Energy