ACDC News – Issue 18-02


What we do when our social and environmental goals collide

Here are a few tendencies identified in a laboratory experiment reported at the 2017 Agricultural and Applied Economics Association conference:

  • The conflict between social and environmental goals is largely intra-personal rather than inter-personal.
  • Achieving social goals generally appears to be a stronger motivation than environmental goals.
  • Support for environmental action is likely to be limited if the burden falls on the disadvantaged in society.

You can read the research report here.

 Taking students on global journalism “field trips”

Journalism Professor John Hatcher (University of Minnesota Duluth) did just that with students in his class, “Community and Journalism.” They ran up no huge travel bill. They weren’t even journalism majors.

However, they used real-time video conferencing technologies to explore local-level journalism with professionals in countries throughout the world. Each class member served as a tour guide for one of the countries visited. Each also wrote a report, helping students focus on differences and similarities across cultures, media, issues, and approaches.

You can read the teacher’s introduction and some student reports here, as published in a 2015 issue of the journal, Grassroots Editor.

 How Extension and agricultural media can partner more fully to address new safety risks in agriculture

A recent article in the Journal of Extension took a fresh look at needs and opportunities for Extension to serve agricultural media more fully in addressing new safety risks in U. S. agriculture. Researchers Scott Heiberger and Jim Evans examined technological and other changes in agriculture and the agricultural media. They conducted a literature review and a survey among members of AAEA: The Agricultural Communicator Network (formerly American Agricultural Editors’ Association).

Findings identified six new potentials for enhancing Extension/media collaboration to advance farm-life safety in a changing safety environment.

You can read the article here.

 Experiences of small-town women journalists in India

A 2015 research report in the journal, Journalism Studies, shed light on the experience of small-town women journalists in northern India. Researcher Disha Mullick conducted in-depth, face-to-face interviews with women reporters in four north Indian states. The study was supported by the United Nations Democracy and Equity Fund.

Mullick concluded: “Findings show that by engaging in media production – knowing fully well the deeply embedded class, caste and gender conventions of this institution – they placed themselves in a position to challenge the status quo, in the private and public spheres, and play out the notion of lived, engaged citizenship.”

You can read the abstract here, or check with us at for help in gaining access.

 How to localize climate change through agriculture

A 2017 article from the National Center for Business Journalism suggested ways in which reporters can engage readers in the climate change debate by showing how it might affect them in the near future. Author Jimmie Jackson suggested that journalists who cover areas with a strong agricultural base might emphasize effects of climate change on livestock and crops in those regions.

You can read more about his four suggestions here.

 Communicator events approaching

April 8-10, 2018
Annual meeting of the North American Agricultural Journalists (NAAJ) in Washington, D.C.

April 11-13, 2018
“Power Up” Agri-Marketing Conference of the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in Kansas City, Missouri.

April 16-20, 2018
Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Education (AIAEE) in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico.

June 2-5, 2018
“Earn your spurs: communicate in the Lone Star State.” Annual Institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Fort Worth, Texas.
Information at:

 So we’ve communicated…

We close this issue of ACDC News with a humbling insight about humans communicating. Thanks to colleague Paul Hixson for calling attention to this thought from George Bernard Shaw. Probably all of us who communicate in the world of food and nutrition, natural resources, rural development, and other aspects of agriculture can offer examples.

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”

 Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to

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