Social Sciences

Journal Information
EISSN: 20760760
Published by: MDPI
Total articles ≅ 2,285

Latest articles in this journal

Published: 5 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120571

Abstract:
Zoos have changed dramatically over the last century and today attract millions of people worldwide, being places where visitors can closely watch wildlife and learn about the species on display. Although present at most zoos, reptiles are challenging animals in terms of visitor interest and engagement, as some species do not fit aesthetic standards from the human standpoint, have culturally negative perceptions or generate aversive emotions. By studying zoo visitors’ social representations of crocodiles and turtles, we aimed to detail their structures, as well as identifying their prototypical elements that help to understand their emotional and cognitive framing. The findings show the crocodile’s prototypical image as a big, fearsome predator with teeth as its main physical attribute. Male visitors showed a more emotional perception of this animal. The turtle’s prototypical image is a slow, hard-shelled ancestral sea animal with a neutral-to-positive set of traits, with no particular differences between genders. Our results shed a more detailed light on some of the social constructs that make up the mental images of these animals, which can help the zoological community direct communication toward a more fluent conversation between stakeholders toward conservation.
Published: 2 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120570

Abstract:
Historically, the relationship between work and organizational psychology and trade union organizations has been one of mutual indifference and neglect. The aim of this study is to explore whether trade union members’ social representations of organizational psychology affect their organizations’ engagement with this discipline, conditioning their ability to derive benefit from its findings. In a sample of 448 members of the four main trade unions of the Basque Autonomous Community in Spain, social representations of six concepts relating to Psychology or Trade Union Activity were explored using the free association technique. Forty-five categories were created and their frequency and percentages were calculated. In addition, the means of the categories shared by the representations of two different concepts were crossed and statistically tested. Although some associations were found between the representations of the two sets of concepts, most were non-significant. These results highlight that the structure of the representations of Psychology gives only a partial explanation for this lack of connection. The implications of the study and its limitations are discussed, and some recommendations for future research are proposed.
Published: 2 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120569

Abstract:
Wide tensions regarding the organization of nation-state power have been triggered over the last years in the UK and Spain. By contrast, in the UK, (i) the plebiscite on Scottish Independence has been characterized since 2014 so far by a regular hegemony of the SNP in Scotland, and (ii) more recently, distinct resilient responses to tackle COVID-19 have dramatically shifted perceptions about the potential constitutional arrangements in Wales partially opposing a state-centric vision of the UK. By contrast, the role played by the constitutionally illegal but socially constitutive referendum in Catalonia on 1 October 2017, remarkably provoked the re-emergence of the Spanish far-right narrative through the surge of the new political party called Vox. In both cases, the urban in Glasgow, Cardiff, and Barcelona has been shaping various oppositions to state-centric agendas, and such oppositions have shaped elections in the UK and Spain. This article sheds light on the distinct, emerging, and emancipatory urban citizenship regimes in Catalonia, Scotland, and Wales, particularly illustrating the roles that Barcelona, Glasgow, and Cardiff, respectively, are playing in articulating a counter-reaction by rescaling a state-centric vision. This article employs past elections’ evidence to illustrate such regimes amid postpandemic times in datafied states.
Published: 2 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120568

Abstract:
Previous research shows that civility norms, such as morality norms, are necessary navigational charts to orient an individual in social life. However, there are no studies that establish the extent to which people consider civility norms as objective facts in a similar way to how many moral norms are considered. This research examines the perceived objectivity of civility norms in contrast to morality norms. The results show, firstly, that immoral norms are perceived to be significantly more objective than moral norms, but the opposite occurs with civility norms. Second, there is a high correlation between what participants consider objective and what they believe the rest of their community considers objective. However, this correlation was greater for immoral behaviors than for moral behaviors, and the opposite occurred for civility behaviors. Finally, participants estimated that the percentage of people in their group who engage in uncivil behaviors is higher than those who engage in immoral behaviors.
Published: 2 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120567

Abstract:
The link between meat production and climate change has fostered increasing social debate in recent years. Livestock is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions, among other global problems attached to the meat industry. However, this debate is often presented as one-dimensional, without a comprehensive approach. As the media plays a key role in shaping public perceptions of nutrition, this study aims to examine how the matter of food transition and climate change is addressed by three centre-left media outlets from Germany (Der Tagesspiegel), the United Kingdom (The Guardian) and Spain (El País). A search including the words *meat* and *climate change* in different languages, performed over one year (2021), resulted in a sample of available news items (N = 273). Using quantitative and qualitative methods, we analysed the coverage in terms of scope and use of frames. The results showed a scant number of news items combining climate change and meat consumption, though there were some differences indicating a greater awareness in the United Kingdom. Most of the news items from the three countries applied frames based on solutions from an environmental perspective. Media attention was discontinuous and sometimes determined by political debates, which made it difficult to reflect upon the underlying issues.
Published: 1 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120566

Abstract:
Debates around the future of work have (re-)emerged strongly as concerns about a new era of workplace automation grow from a plethora of narratives estimating the potential of machine substitution. This research aims to analyse how these perspectives dictate current discussions based on taken-for-granted assumptions about work. The analysis takes the lens of work psychology and delves into the case of automated vehicles (AVs), an oft-debated form of automation by its implications for the transport workforce. We explore how the debate is subdued to a deterministic “metrological universe”, overloading the present epoch with certainty about imaginaries of “driverless futures”. However, when we move our attention beyond the quantitative speculation of future employment and connect automation with the concrete socio-professional realities of transport workers, such imaginaries are deconstructed while key issues regarding the quality of work with AVs emerge. By arguing that such issues remain “forgotten” in dominant technological discussions, bipartite and tripartite actions towards decent work are gathered, considering the institutional constellation in road transport. As future research, we propose to challenge those governance models predicated on the language of AV acceptance, which ultimately places the responsibility of managing the uncertainties that AVs hold on the shoulders of transport workers.
Published: 1 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120565

Abstract:
Task complexity is one of the main factors studied by academics and is at the center of leaders’ concerns. It is related to delegation and flexibility, which are enhanced by workers’ engagement and depend on how leadership is shared. In this context, this research was carried out with the main objective of testing the serial mediating effect of engagement and shared leadership on the relationship between task complexity and flexibility and the relationship between task complexity and delegation. The sample for this study consists of 368 participants, all of whom work in organizations based in Portugal. The results indicate that task complexity is positively and significantly associated with engagement, shared leadership, flexibility, and delegation. Shared leadership has a positive and significant association with flexibility and delegation. The serial mediating effect of engagement and shared leadership on the relationship between task complexity and flexibility was confirmed. The serial mediating effect of engagement and shared leadership on the relationship between task complexity and delegation was not confirmed.
Published: 1 December 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120564

Abstract:
People make numerous trips every day for a variety of purposes. Transport mode choice directly impacts travel time, congestion, and environmental conditions. It also depends on various economic, social, environmental, and personal related factors. This paper investigates the association between identity characteristics and transport mode choices in Thessaloniki, Greece. A customized questionnaire survey was carried out with 506 individuals in 2019 to collect data on nine self-declared personal statuses (affiliation with environment, place of residence, career, companionship, etc.) and trip frequencies of all available transport options in Thessaloniki. We ran latent class analyses to uncover three identity clusters. The Active individuals prefer public transport over private car, and they are mostly young, sporty, and with low incomes. Additionally, the Family-Oriented individuals are comparatively older, and they have greater access to private cars and higher incomes, while the Typical Urban population exhibits a slightly higher use of cars and public transport than the Active one. Trips on foot and by car (as passengers) are equally preferred by all latent classes’ populations. Our findings highlight the role of individuals’ identities in the development of travel behavior and may assist with the design of targeted policies and marketing strategies, which will facilitate sustainable urban mobility behaviors.
Published: 30 November 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120563

Abstract:
This paper investigates the determinants of refugee students’ social integration in Lebanon, Turkey, and Australia. This paper seeks to understand how legal status and the corresponding length of refugee asylum shape refugee children’s social integration. The three host countries offer refugees different legal statuses ranging from short-term in Lebanon, medium-term in Turkey, and long-term in Australia. Therefore, our data collection covers a sample of 1298 middle school refugee students from all three countries. Our probit regression analysis sheds light on the importance of micro-level factors related to individual and household characteristics and meso-level factors related to school factors shaping refugee students’ social integration. The statistical dominance of meso-level factors indicates that the within-country differences are stronger than the between-country differences, yet it does not rule out the importance of macro policies that indirectly influence refugee students’ social integration by shaping provisions at the micro and meso levels.
Published: 30 November 2022
by MDPI
Journal: Social Sciences
Social Sciences, Volume 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci11120562

Abstract:
This paper reflects on my experiences as a queer researcher investigating the relationship between university lad culture and gender-related violence. Gender-related violence is analysed as a useful conceptual tool for considering lad culture, owing to the relationship between lad culture and sexual violence, LGBT-phobia and the privileging of white, young, heterosexual men within lad culture. Using reflections from my doctoral case study research, in which I collected data from self-identified ‘lads’ (5 in-depth interviews), I will consider the challenges and benefits of my researcher position in relation the research methodology. Then, using a re-analysis of interviews, I will argue that my researcher position led to certain presentations of lad culture from my participants. Self-Identified Lad (SIL) participants presented themselves as distant from lad culture, showed queerness/hid homophobia within lad culture and were willing to discuss sexual violence. While the case study yielded only a small sample of SILs, a benefit of my researcher position is that this project was the first to conduct interviews with LGB lads and one female lad. My queer feminist position has therefore produced a unique insight into lads who identify with lad culture but discursively position themselves as fringe members. This contributes to theorisations of a laddish continuum, and allows us to consider why some self-identified lads are on the fringes, and what this tells us about lad culture.
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