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To be seen but not to be heard: scientific rationality versus democratic rationality in the decision-making process on dangerous waste management in Portugal

Author

Listed:
  • Manuel Couret Branco

    () (Department of Economics, University of Évora)

  • Dália Cristóvão

    (University of Évora)

Abstract

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.

Suggested Citation

  • Manuel Couret Branco & Dália Cristóvão, 2006. "To be seen but not to be heard: scientific rationality versus democratic rationality in the decision-making process on dangerous waste management in Portugal," Economics Working Papers 11_2006, University of Évora, Department of Economics (Portugal).
  • Handle: RePEc:evo:wpecon:11_2006
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10174/8448
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    Keywords

    Participation; Environmental Equity; Sustainable Development; Risk Management; Democracy; Dangerous Waste;

    JEL classification:

    • Q53 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • Z1 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics

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