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VortragWhen the Boundary Arrangement Doesn‘t Fit the Problem Structure

Konferenz: 1st International Conference on Public Policy (ICPP)
26.06.13 - 28.06.13, Grenoble/Frankreich

Indirect land use change (ILUC) induced by the mass production of biofuels is currently one of the most contested aspects of the European Union's (EU) biofuel policy. Starting from a definition of ILUC and its classification as a wicked problem, we investigate the EU’s ILUC science-policy boundary arrangement in order to analyse whether it fits the problem struc-ture or not. We find that, even though considerable boundary work has been done, the boundary arrangement remains designed as if ILUC was a purely technical problem to be dealt with behind closed doors. After deliberating the causes for this misfit between problem structure and boundary arrangement, we argue that the policy-making strategy (decision-making on the basis of the best-available scientific evidence) provokes an (over)politicization of science or an ‘excess of objectivity’ on ILUC as well as a depoliticiza-tion of the underlying conflicts. 

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