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The role of discourse and linguistic framing effects in sustaining high carbon energy policy--An accessible introduction

Listed author(s):
  • Scrase, J. Ivan
  • Ockwell, David G.
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    This paper seeks to provide an accessible introduction to the relevance to energy policy of a fundamental insight from the policy sciences. This concerns the role that the linguistic framing of policy problems and solutions can play in sustaining the dominance of existing policy positions. The paper introduces a discourse perspective to understanding the policy process and uses it to analyse four central goals pursued in energy policy: access, security, efficiency and environmental acceptability, drawing on examples from UK policy documents. It introduces readers to how, as well as requiring technical and economic solutions, a transition to a low carbon energy system will also require a 'reframing' of energy policy problems and solutions in a way that either connects with, or overrides the powerful discourses that shape energy policy today.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Policy.

    Volume (Year): 38 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 5 (May)
    Pages: 2225-2233

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:38:y:2010:i:5:p:2225-2233
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    1. Michael Darcy, 1999. "The Discourse of 'Community' and the Reinvention of Social Housing Policy in Australia," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 36(1), pages 13-26, January.
    2. Patsy Healey, 1999. "Sites, Jobs and Portfolios: Economic Development Discourses in the Planning System," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 36(1), pages 27-42, January.
    3. Harriet Bulkeley, 2000. "Discourse coalitions and the Australian climate change policy network," Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 18(6), pages 727-748, December.
    4. Yvonne Rydin, 1999. "Can We Talk Ourselves into Sustainability? The Role of Discourse in the Environmental Policy Process," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 8(4), pages 467-484, November.
    5. David Ockwell, 2008. "‘Opening up’ policy to reflexive appraisal: a role for Q Methodology? A case study of fire management in Cape York, Australia," Policy Sciences, Springer;Society of Policy Sciences, vol. 41(4), pages 263-292, December.
    6. Heather Lovell & Harriet Bulkeley & Susan Owens, 2009. "Converging Agendas? Energy and Climate Change Policies in the UK," Environment and Planning C, , vol. 27(1), pages 90-109, February.
    7. Harriet Bulkeley, 2000. "Discourse Coalitions and the Australian Climate Change Policy Network," Environment and Planning C, , vol. 18(6), pages 727-748, December.
    8. Heather Lovell & Harriet Bulkeley & Susan Owens, 2009. "Converging agendas? Energy and climate change policies in the UK," Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 27(1), pages 90-109, February.
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