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As disasters and climate change threaten more and more people around the world, it is increasingly important for communities to adopt resilience policies. However, despite considerable benefits and the high probability of a return on investment, resilience policies are often neglected. In this article, we examine the agenda setting campaign by the Los Angeles Times that helped create the conditions for mandatory retrofitting ordinances to succeed where previous attempts failed. Through in-depth interviews with journalists and editors at the Times, and policymakers involved in the debate, we illustrate the motivations, tactics, and impact of their coverage of earthquake risk in Southern California. The article contributes to the understanding of agenda setting, risk communication, and local news production by demonstrating why and how journalists can effectively communicate risks and enable policy change, which could apply to a range of environmental threats.
Thomas Jamieson & Douglas A. Van Belle (2019) Resilience-Focused Journalism: The Motivations, Tactics, and Impact of the Los Angeles Times Coverage of Earthquake Risk, Environmental Communication, DOI: 10.1080/17524032.2019.1674895