Multifaceted Perspectives on Water Risks and Policies: A Cultural Domains Approach in a Southwestern City

Kelli Larson, Amber Wutich, Dave White, Tischa A. Muñoz-Erickson, Sharon Harlan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Considering an array of perspectives on human-ecological problems and possible solutions is essential for developing strategies that are socially accepted, culturally appropriate, and ultimately supported by residents, whose views and behaviors significantly affect environmental conditions. Following a tripartite model of affective, cognitive, and conative judgments, this paper examines: 1) local concerns about municipal water consumption, 2) the perceived role residents' landscaping choices play in contributing to resource scarcity, and 3) attitudes about regulatory policies aimed at conservation. The analysis assesses how people's multifaceted perspectives are influenced by various cultural domains - specifically, ecological worldviews, political orientations, and ethnicity, which were more significant than social attributes controlled for in regression models. Advancing a robust conceptual approach to understanding the sociocultural basis of environmental judgments, we found a dominant influence for ecological worldviews across perspectives, with otherwise complex relationships between people's views and distinctive spheres of culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-87
Number of pages13
JournalHuman Ecology Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2011


  • Cultural domains
  • Environmental governance
  • Risk perceptions
  • Tripartite judgments
  • Water scarcity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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