Dr Catherine Happer
- Lecturer (Sociology)
telephone: 0141 330 6387
Dr Catherine Happer is a member of the Glasgow University Media Group. She is a sociologist with special interest in the way in which the media shapes public understanding and belief across various audience groups. She previously worked as an Audience Researcher and later Factual programme-maker at the BBC.
Catherine graduated with a First in Sociology from the University of Glasgow, winning the Adam Smith Prize and then a teaching scholarship within the Sociology Department at Lancaster University to study towards a PhD. In 2011, she returned to Glasgow University. Her research interests include the media and social change and audience reception with specific focus on media accounts of climate change and energy sustainability. She is published in international journals and is co-author of Communicating Climate Change and Energy Security: New Methods in Understanding Audiences (Routledge).
In 2011, she collaborated with Chatham House on a major study funded by the UKERC which looked at public attitudes and behaviours in response to climate change communications. In 2013, she was awarded a grant by the TSB/Future Cites board to undertake research which looked at the role of social media in decision-making about energy efficiency behaviours. In 2014, she worked again with Chatham House on an Avatar Alliance Foundation funded international project investigating the potential role of the public in reducing GHG emissions through dietary choices, and how the media might foster this change.
Catherine has given evidence at the House of Commons Select Committee on Climate, Policy and Public Understanding, presented to the Scottish Government and at national and international conferences and appeared on the BBC and Al Jazeera. She has written for a number of blogs including a number of articles in The Conversation, Bella Caledonia and Open Democracy. In 2015, Catherine launched a new Masters in Media, Communications and International Journalism.
Co-Investigator: Avatar Alliance Foundation International Research
Public Understanding and Behaviour, and the Impact of Diet for Climate Change and Food Security Policies: Case studies in Brazil, China, UK and US (£155,289.56). Principal Investigator: Professor Greg Philo. August 2014.
Co- Investigator: TSB/Future City, Glasgow City Council
Public attitudes, beliefs and behaviours and the role of social media in relation to energy efficiency (£90,975.80). Principal Investigator: Professor Greg Philo. October 2013.
Principal Investigator: Knowledge Exchange Fund, University of Glasgow
Public engagment with energy efficiency: extending the Future City work (£21,044.77). November 2013.
Named Researcher/co-bid-writer: British Academy Small Research Grants
Probation, media representations and public understanding of justice (£9,859.68). Principal Investigator: Professor Fergus McNeill, Co-Investigator: Professor Greg Philo. March 2013.
I am interested in supervising projects in any of the following areas:
- Climate change/environmental communications
- Audience reception theory
- Media and social change
- New media and public opinion
I am currently supervising doctoral projects in these areas:
- Western media framing of events in Venezuela
- The role of communications in reforming social attitudes towards former prisoners
- Cyber commemorations and public support for warfare
- Government policy, media coverage and public understanding of climate change in China
- Sociology of Media 1: Issues of Production, Information Supply and Content (Hons level)
- Sociology of Media 2: Audiences, New Media and the Future of Public Broadcasting (Hons level)
- Media, Communications and Journalism: Criticism and Theory
- Researching Audiences and the Media
- Practical News Journalism