To be seen but not to be heard: scientific rationality versus democratic rationality in the decision-making process on dangerous waste management in Portugal
The decision-making process concerning the co-incineration of industrial dangerous waste in Portugal has most certainly been transformed into a conflict centered on the unequal distribution of risks to the environment and to public health, opposing local population to the government. It is also a good example of the conflict between scientific and democratic rationalities as the government?s decision is supposed to receive its legitimacy by science whereas those most affected by government decisions, local people, are impelled by democratic rationality. Based on a case study, the paper concludes that, despite a long period of public involvement there was no real public participation in the decision making process.
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