Monthly Archives: June 2018

When are scientists neutral experts or strategic policy makers?

Great post by Professor Karin Ingold on the potential for different roles for scientists in evidence informed policymaking

Integration and Implementation Insights

Community member post by Karin Ingold

karin-ingold Karin Ingold (biography)

What roles can science and scientific experts adopt in policymaking? One way of examining this is through the Advocacy Coalition Framework (Sabatier and Jenkins-Smith 1993). This framework highlights that policymaking and the negotiations regarding a political issue—such as reform of the health system, or the introduction of an energy tax on fossil fuels—is dominated by advocacy coalitions in opposition. Advocacy coalitions are groups of actors sharing the same opinion about how a policy should be designed and implemented. Each coalition has its own beliefs and ideologies and each wants to see its preferences translated into policies.

I build on the work of Weible and colleagues (2010), who distinguish three types of ‘subsystems’ in which policy is made:

  • a collaborative subsystem, where at least two coalitions exist; they have different opinions, but want to overcome them
  • an adversarial subsystem, where…

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