Read e-book online Science in Environmental Policy: The Politics of Objective PDF

By Ann Campbell Keller

ISBN-10: 0262013126

ISBN-13: 9780262013123

ISBN-10: 0262512963

ISBN-13: 9780262512961

An research of the function and impact of scientists on the agenda-setting, legislative, and implementation levels of environmental coverage making.

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Extra resources for Science in Environmental Policy: The Politics of Objective Advice (Politics, Science, and the Environment)

Sample text

In addition, the scientific understandings of acid rain and climate change, respectively, are limited by large scientific uncertainties about the timing, the magnitude, and the location of anticipated effects. The policy options implied in the definition of these issues have mobilized both vigorous support and organized and effective opposition. Finally, both issues tap into a broadly held view that advances in environmental protection create economic inefficiencies for regulated industries. The selection of cases, however, carries with it an important limitation in that scientists’ role in domains outside environmental politics may differ in important ways.

First, Jasanoff (2005b) argues that institutions that wish to integrate science and policy face a “three-body problem”: they must account for science as a body of knowledge, for scientists as individuals, and for scientists acting in concert through expert committees. : 211). My study focuses on scientists as individuals, recognizing that they often invoke a body of scientific knowledge as the basis for their policy claims and that they often speak for a committee of scientists who, together, are intended to represent a balanced view of how that body of scientific knowledge relates to a specific policy question.

This tendency, though a general one in democratic governance, is especially prominent in debates about environmental policy. Following Porter, I will highlight where the notion of objectivity is advanced without assuming that scientists are objective participants in policy debates. 30 At the same time, I will call attention to the tendency of actors involved in environmental policy making to behave as if these terms are not contested, especially when the concept of “objective science” or “objective scientist” is used to bolster a political position or argument.

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Science in Environmental Policy: The Politics of Objective Advice (Politics, Science, and the Environment) by Ann Campbell Keller


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