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Lighting Professionals versus Light Pollution Experts? Investigating Views on an Emerging Environmental Concern

1
Department of Urban and Environmental Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, 04318 Leipzig, Germany
2
School of Planning-Building-Environment, Technische Universität Berlin, 10623 Berlin, Germany
3
Studio Dannemann, Baerwaldstraße 63A, 10961 Berlin, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(6), 1696; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11061696
Received: 25 February 2019 / Revised: 15 March 2019 / Accepted: 15 March 2019 / Published: 21 March 2019
Concerns about the potential negative effects of artificial light at night on humans, flora and fauna, were originally raised by astronomers and environmentalists. Yet, we observe a growing interest in what is called light pollution among the general public and in the lighting field. Although lighting professionals are often critical of calling light ‘pollution’, they increasingly acknowledge the problem and are beginning to act accordingly. Are those who illuminate joining forces with those who take a critical stance towards artificial light at night? We explore this question in more detail based on the results of a non-representative worldwide expert survey. In our analysis, we distinguish between “lighting professionals” with occupational backgrounds linked to lighting design and the lighting industry, and “light pollution experts” with mostly astronomy- and environment-related professional backgrounds, and explore their opposing and shared views vis-à-vis issues of light pollution. Our analysis reveals that despite seemingly conflicting interests, lighting professionals and light pollution experts largely agree on the problem definition and problem-solving approaches. However, we see diverging views regarding potential obstacles to light pollution mitigation and associated governance challenges. View Full-Text
Keywords: light pollution; sustainable lighting; light planning; expert survey; ALAN light pollution; sustainable lighting; light planning; expert survey; ALAN
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Schulte-Römer, N.; Meier, J.; Dannemann, E.; Söding, M. Lighting Professionals versus Light Pollution Experts? Investigating Views on an Emerging Environmental Concern. Sustainability 2019, 11, 1696.

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