Public awareness and risk perceptions of endocrine disrupting chemicals

  • Melissa Kelly

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are exogenous chemicals found in food, consumer products, and the environment. EDCs are ubiquitous in modern life and human exposure is associated with many negative health effects such as reproductive disorders, metabolic disorders, and hormone related cancers. EDCs are a serious public health risk and numerous guidelines and risk messages have been disseminated to inform and protect the public. However, little is known about current levels of public awareness and risk perception of EDCs and how the public respond to EDC risk messages. Understanding how the public characterises and evaluates a risk has important implications in determining societal decision making and behaviour change. Therefore, effective risk communication of EDCs must take into account the public’s perspective. This thesis explores the UK public’s awareness and risk perception of EDCs to help policy makers design effective risk communication strategies and ultimately protect public health. Effective risk communication strategies will not only help raise awareness and reduce exposure to EDCs, but will also increase the demand for public protection and EDC policy reform.

Thesis embargoed until 31 December 2022
Date of AwardDec 2021
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Queen's University Belfast
SponsorsEC-Horizon 2020
SupervisorLisa Connolly (Supervisor) & Moira Dean (Supervisor)


  • Consumer psychology
  • risk communication
  • endocrine disrupting chemicals
  • survey
  • public health
  • awareness
  • risk perception
  • consumer survey

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