Social media and sentiment in bioenergy consultation

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Abstract

he push to widen participation in public consultation suggests social media as an additional mechanism through which to engage the public. Bioenergy companies need to build their capacity to communicate in these new media and to monitor the attitudes of the public and opposition organisations towards energy development projects.
Design/methodology/approach

This short paper outlines the planning issues bioenergy developments face and the main methods of communication used in the public consultation process in the UK. The potential role of social media in communication with stakeholders is identified. The capacity of sentiment analysis to mine opinions from social media is summarised, and illustrated using a sample of tweets containing the term ‘bioenergy’
Findings

Social media have the potential to improve information flows between stakeholders and developers. Sentiment analysis is a viable Purpose The push to widen participation in public consultation suggests social media as an additional mechanism through which to engage the public. Bioenergy companies need to build their capacity to communicate in these new media and to monitor the attitudes of the public and opposition organisations towards energy development projects. Design/methodology/approach This short paper outlines the planning issues bioenergy developments face and the main methods of communication used in the public consultation process in the UK. The potential role of social media in communication with stakeholders is identified. The capacity of sentiment analysis to mine opinions from social media is summarised, and illustrated using a sample of tweets containing the term ‘bioenergy’ Findings Social media have the potential to improve information flows between stakeholders and developers. Sentiment analysis is a viable methodology, which bioenergy companies should be using to measure public opinion in the consultation process. Preliminary analysis shows promising results. Research limitations/implications Analysis is preliminary and based on a small dataset. It is intended only to illustrate the potential of sentiment analysis and not to draw general conclusions about the bioenergy sector. Originality/value Opinion mining, though established in marketing and political analysis, is not yet systematically applied as a planning consultation tool. This is a missed opportunity.

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  • Social media and sentiment in bioenergy consultation

    Rights statement: Uren, V., Wright, D., Scott, J., He, Y., & Saif, H. (2016). Social media and sentiment in bioenergy consultation. International journal of energy sector management, 10(1), 87-98. This article is © Emerald Group Publishing and permission has been granted for this version to appear here http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJESM-11-2014-0007. Emerald does not grant permission for this article to be further copied/distributed or hosted elsewhere without the express permission from Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

    Accepted author manuscript, 297 KB, PDF-document

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-98
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Energy Sector Management
Volume10
Issue1
Early online date1 Jan 2016
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - 2016

Bibliographic note

Uren, V., Wright, D., Scott, J., He, Y., & Saif, H. (2016). Social media and sentiment in bioenergy consultation. International journal of energy sector management, 10(1), 87-98. This article is © Emerald Group Publishing and permission has been granted for this version to appear here http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJESM-11-2014-0007. Emerald does not grant permission for this article to be further copied/distributed or hosted elsewhere without the express permission from Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Funding: BioenNW (INTERREG IVB) project; and EU-FP7 project SENSE4US (grant no. 611242).

    Keywords

  • bioenergy consultation, sentiment analysis, social media, stakeholder meetings

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