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De-centering environmental governance: A short history and analysis of democratic processes in the forest sector of Alberta, Canada

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  • John Parkins
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    Abstract

    This paper describes the emergence of a de-centered and privatized mode of governance in the Canadian forest sector. Using deliberative democratic theory as a descriptive foundation, it explores two key social facts that are arguably central to any historical analysis of this trend. First, increasing cultural pluralism challenges contemporary society to create new institutional arrangements that can incorporate a much larger, and often contested, array of public values into decision-making processes. Second, as management systems become more complex and science-driven, decision makers are finding it increasingly difficult to resolve issues of uncertainty and conflicting scientific evidence. De-centered forms of public participation provide important opportunities for government and industry to overcome these contemporary challenges, but certain side effects are also apparent. From the steering tactics of sponsoring agencies and corporations to the “ghettoizingâ€\x9D of environmental discourses, several implications are discussed. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11077-006-9015-6
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Springer in its journal Policy Sciences.

    Volume (Year): 39 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 2 (June)
    Pages: 183-202

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    Handle: RePEc:kap:policy:v:39:y:2006:i:2:p:183-202

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    Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=102982

    Related research

    Keywords: Environmental governance; Deliberative democracy; Public participation; Small groups; Public sphere; Forest policy;

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    1. Luigi Pellizzoni, 2003. "Uncertainty and Participatory Democracy," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 12(2), pages 195-224, May.
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    Cited by:
    1. Dare, Melanie (Lain) & Schirmer, Jacki & Vanclay, Frank, 2011. "Does forest certification enhance community engagement in Australian plantation management?," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(5), pages 328-337, June.
    2. Kleinschmit, Daniela, 2012. "Confronting the demands of a deliberative public sphere with media constraints," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(C), pages 71-80.

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