Olofsson's research focuses on conflict and individual behavior within contentious policy issues. Overarching themes in Olofsson's writings include the effect of context and individual cognitive tendencies on decision-making and political behavior, as well as the development of risk perceptions. Past research has focused on environmental and energy policy settings and addresses a wide variety of themes such as participation, democratic values, media, and equity.
Demonstrates that even in policy issues that are previously "untested", there are coalitions that form and policy change is often preceded by a change in those coalitions. Discusses the implications for unconventional oil and gas development in India.
Confirms existing theories regarding air pollution in Delhi, India, while also exploring the priorities that influence public opinions, political decisions, and eventually public policies.
Compares the perceptions of individuals involved in hydraulic fracturing in a bellwether state, Colorado, with individuals involved more generally at a national level and found that there are some distinctions. Finds that some best practices that emerged were: recognize the complexity of policy conflicts and be wary of quick solutions, spend some time identifying the probable sources of conflict, and mitigate or steer the policy conflict.
Considers the viability of transferring theories of the policy process across borders and contexts. Finds that while there are some aspects of popular theories that can be carried across contexts, researchers should be cautious and meticulous in application.
Uncovers the popular frames that media use to depict climate and air issues in Delhi, India and tracked the development of those narratives over time.