reasons why religion’s role murky in environmental concern

ch.2, ec-p.30 – methodological, theoretical, and analytic reasons why empirical findings on the association of religion with environmental concern continue appearing contradictory…

“Three factors keep religion’s role in environmentalism murky. A methodological one is ongoing reliance on quantitative investigations that keeps analysts from a deeper, more exploratory search of how religion informs highly religious people’s perceptions of environmental problems. Lack of theoretical correspondence among conceptual variables and measures of religion and environmental concern exacerbates this, increasing confounding or spurious findings. And few analytic frameworks exist that are designed to identify both the presence of religious factors and the possible mediating or competing non-religious influences on religious people’s views toward environmental policy such as political and economic factors. This makes it difficult to reconcile the apparently contradictory empirical results presently in the literature that describe religion’s association with environmentalism. The consistently weak statistical association between varying measures of religiosity and environmentalism, and inconsistent distinctions between engaging in individual pro-environmental behaviors and expressions of public support for environmental policy, continues demonstrating this lack of clarity.”




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