Beyond the ABC: climate change policy and theories of social change
In this short and deliberately provocative paper I reflect on what seems to be a yawning gulf between the potential contribution of the social sciences and the typically restricted models and concepts of social change embedded in contemporary environmental policy in the UK, and in other countries too. As well as making a strong case for going beyond what I refer to as the dominant paradigm of ‘ABC’—attitude, behaviour, and choice—I discuss the attractions of this model, the blind spots it creates, and the forms of governance it sustains. This exercise provides some insight into why so much relevant social theory remains so marginalised, and helps identify opportunities for making better use of existing intellectual resources.
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