Individual preferences towards nuclear energy: the transient residency effect

Contu, Davide
Mourato, Susana
Kaya, Ozgur
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Nuclear energy is an energy source that is usually unfavourable among the public due to its inherent risks. However, it presents a number of benefits, including the possibility to reduce emissions and the contribution to tackle climate change. Among the countries adopting nuclear energy, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is unusual in that a large share of its residents consists of expatriates who live only part of their lives in the country with no (or highly unlikely) access to citizenship. This distinctive population structure offers the opportunity to investigate the effect of transient residency on acceptance and preferences towards nuclear energy. We conducted this investigation by designing a stated preferences-based survey, targeting an online nationwide sample. The survey collected information on socio-economic characteristics and attitudes, including views on perceived risks and benefits of nuclear energy, views towards different energy sources and life satisfaction. Results indicate that transient individuals, especially those who are more satisfied with their lives in the UAE, are significantly less likely to oppose the construction of new nuclear plants. These individuals are characterized by a more positive perception of benefits over risks arising from nuclear energy. Policy implications are discussed. © 2020, © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
This article is not available at CUD collection. The version of scholarly record of this Article is published in Applied Economics (2020), available online at:
choice experiments, Nuclear energy, social acceptability, transient resident, willingness to accept
Contu, D., Mourato, S. & Kaya, O. (2020). Individual preferences towards nuclear energy: the transient residency effect. Applied Economics.