This thesis examines how the wording of proposed government policies can affect the level of public support that a given policy generates. By surveying 158 Phoenix residents, I tested the differing degrees of support that voters would have for a proposed city ordinance, which would stop Homeowners' Associations from restricting the use of native desert plants in residential landscaping. The ordinance was framed in the survey as a self-governance issue or a water conservation issue. I found that the message frames had little effect on the overall level of support for the ordinance, since most residents had moderate support for the policy. However, participants who were either residents of Homeowners' Associations that did not have native plant restrictions, or native residents of Arizona, demonstrated greater levels of support for the self-determination frame of the proposed ordinance. These findings have implications for policy makers who use targeted messages to establish pro-environmental policies at the local level.
- Effects of Framing on Public Support for Pro-Environmental Policies
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