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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The play of language in ecological policymaking
by Jasak, Joan Marie, Ph.D., Temple University, 2013, 201; 3564751
Abstract (Summary)

What is the most effective problem solving method at the environmental policy table in the context of a radical diversity of worldviews? I answer the question in the dissertation by developing a theory that accommodates diversity in policymaking. My line of reasoning is as follows.

In Chapter One, I survey the diverse discourse about Global Climate Models in detail. I demonstrate that a radical diversity of worldviews is expressed in the discourse. In Chapter Two, I advance a model of language that is an accurate foundation for discourse in policymaking. In Chapter Three, I consider the best policymaking strategy in view of the language model: idea-based policymaking. I then demonstrate that the policymaking strategy is weakly theorized. I introduce a theory of its operation at the end of Chapter Three, and develop it in detail in Chapters Four and Five. Because there is not currently a model, I consider an analogue model in play and explain the analogy in Chapter Four. I apply the analogue to the policy table in Chapter Five and fully develop an operational theory to explicate the problem solving method in policymaking.

The force of the dissertation's contribution is made in Chapters Three to Five. Chapters One and Two are a ground of the argument.

In Chapters Three to Five, I argue that idea-based policymaking is a promising form of policymaking practice because social learning is the operative problem-solving mechanism. In social learning: (1) the worldviews of the actors are leveraged in discourse and (2) power relations are dynamically distributed among actors (Hajer). The result is a fortified problem solving operation. This is because in (1) the heterogeneous problem solving resources of the group members are distributed and in (2) social learning shifts power relations by dislodging, mediating, and subsuming a new power regime.

In summary, the dissertation is a contribution in applied philosophy. I comprehensively demonstrate that an effective policymaking method will manage the incommensurability of worldview and stipulate a problem solving method that engages the basic condition of policymaking—radical diversity—rather than denies it.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Dyke, Charles
Commitee: Lombard, Matthew, Monahan, Michael, Taylor, Paul
School: Temple University
Department: Philosophy
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-A 74/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Cultural anthropology, Environmental philosophy, Philosophy, Public policy
Keywords: Agogic, Cricket, Ecological policy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Play, Policymaking, Social learning
Publication Number: 3564751
ISBN: 978-1-303-13978-9
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