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Industrial pollution, spatial stigma and economic decline: the case of Asopos river basin through the lens of local small business owners

Industrial pollution, spatial stigma and economic decline: the case of Asopos river basin through the lens of local small business owners

Skouloudis, Antonios, Jones, Nikoletta, Roumeliotis, Spyridon, Isaac, David, Greig, Alison and Evangelinos, Konstantinos (2016) Industrial pollution, spatial stigma and economic decline: the case of Asopos river basin through the lens of local small business owners. Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, 60 (9). pp. 1575-1600. ISSN 0964-0568 (Print), 1360-0559 (Online) (doi:https://doi.org/10.1080/09640568.2016.1243519)

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Abstract

This paper explores the notion of environmentally induced spatial stigma through an analysis of data from interviews across public attitudes to pollution within the Asopos river basin in central Greece. The area has a 40 year plus history of legal and illicit industrial waste disposal and public debate on the associated environmental degradation. The study focuses on the perceptions and beliefs of a sector of the community likely to be directly and negatively affected by stigma, that is small business owners in the tourism and hospitality sector. The qualitative analysis explores awareness and viewpoints on environmental degradation and water quality within the local context, implications for the local economy and the individual’s own enterprise, views on industrial environmental management as well as corporate responsibility and future prospects for the environmental problems of Asopos. Findings reveal a noticeable variation in views on industrial pollution and ecosystem deterioration among the respondents, but overall a strong environmentally induced stigmatization of the area. They also uncover an information asymmetry and lack of credible commitment by government bodies and industry members in disclosing accurate information, a situation likely to increase speculation and uncertainty within the community. The paper concludes by addressing implications of the findings to policy-making and managerial considerations, along with future research perspectives which aim to increase considerations of sustainability aspects for local development.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Environmental degradation; Spatial stigma; Industrial pollution; Small business; Qualitative study; Asopos river; Local sustainability;
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities
Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Humanities > Department of Built Environment
Last Modified: 21 Feb 2018 16:53
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: GREAT a
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/17131

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