Print page

Reflexive Governance for Sustainable Development

Edited by Jan-Peter Voß, Technische Universität Berlin, Germany, Dierk Bauknecht, Research Fellow, Öko-Institut – Institute for Applied Ecology, Germany and René Kemp, Senior Research Fellow, UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University, The Netherlands
This book deals with the issue of sustainable development in a novel and innovative way. It examines the governance implications of reflexive modernisation – the condition that societal development is endangered by its own side-effects. With conceptualising reflexive governance the book leads a way out of endless quarrels about the definition of sustainability and into a new mode of collective action.
Extent: 480 pp
Hardback Price: £122.00 Web: £109.80
Publication Date: 2006
ISBN: 978 1 84542 582 1
Availability: In Stock
£0.00

Buy the E-book

Join our mailing list

  • Environment
  • Environmental Governance and Regulation
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • Environmental Sociology
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Environmental Politics and Policy
  • European Politics and Policy
This book deals with the issue of sustainable development in a novel and innovative way. It examines the governance implications of reflexive modernisation – the condition that societal development is endangered by its own side-effects. With conceptualising reflexive governance the book leads a way out of endless quarrels about the definition of sustainability and into a new mode of collective action.

The authors assert that sustainability is not a defined end-state, but should be understood as the capacity of society to learn about the conditions of its future existence and wants. This requires, in their view, a specific kind of problem solving framework which emphasises the interlinkage of problems and scales, as well as long-term and indirect effects of various actions. Sustainability calls for new forms of governance with attention given to uncertainty, ambivalence about multiple goals and distributed power. The book develops an alternative framework with which to address the challenge of sustainability and derives a set of strategy elements for dealing with sustainability in practice. These are discussed from conceptual as well as practical perspectives.

Bringing recent insights from innovation research, governance studies and complexity theory in common focus, Reflexive Governance for Sustainable Development will be of great interest to researchers in social change, innovation and governance studies, as well as policymakers confronted with sustainable development issues.
‘In 16 chapters by experts from across Europe, Reflexive Governance for Sustainable Development explores strategies, policies and programs that may help move us through an era of uncertainty.’
– Sustainability: Science, Practice, and Policy

‘Innovations are introduced in the hope that they will have positive impacts on their targets, but also in the certain knowledge that there will be negative and unintended effects as well. In time, these less desired effects may also come to generate innovative and adaptive responses in a continuous, “reflexive” process. This book sets out to analyse the consequences for sustainability research and policy analysis. This collection, by many of the leading thinkers in the field, blends sophisticated theoretical discussion with practical perspectives on how to deal with the conundrum – the only thing certain about the future is that you’ll be wrong about it!’
– Frans Berkhout, Vrije University, The Netherlands
Contributors: P. Balogh, D. Bauknecht, U. Beck, J. Grin, R. Kemp, K. Konrad, M.C. Loibl, D. Loorbach, P. Magnuszewski, I. Oehme, A. Rip, H. Rohracher, J. Sendzimir, A. Smith, P. Späth, A. Stirling, B. Truffer, B. van Vliet, A. Vári, J.-P. Voß, K.M. Weber, K. Whitelegg, F. Wolff
Contents:
Preface
Part I: Introduction
1. Sustainability and Reflexive Government: Introduction
Jan-Peter Voß and René Kemp

Part II: Reflections on Reflexive Governance
2. Reflexive Governance: Politics in the Global Risk Society
Ulrich Beck

3. Reflexive Modernisation as a Governance Issue, Or: Designing and Shaping Re-structuration
John Grin

4. A Co-Evolutionary Approach to Reflexive Governance – and its Ironies
Arie Rip

Part III: Strategies for Sustainable System Transformation
5.Transition Management: A Reflexive Governance Approach
René Kemp and Derk Loorbach

6. Adaptive Management to Restore Ecological and Economic Resilience in the Tisza River Basin
Jan Sendzimir, Piotr Magnuszewski, Peter Balogh and Anna Vári

7. Sustainability Foresight: Reflexive Governance in the Transformation of Utility Systems
Jan-Peter Voß, Bernard Truffer and Kornelia Konrad

8. Foresight and Adaptive Planning as Complementary Elements in Anticipatory Policy-making: A Conceptual and Methodological Approach
K. Matthias Weber

Part IV: Knowledge Production and Assessment
9. Precaution, Foresight and Sustainability: Reflection and Reflexivity in the Governance of Science and Technology
Andy Stirling

10. The (Re)search for Solutions: Research Programmes for Sustainable Development
Katy Whitelegg

11. Integrating Perspectives in the Practice of Transdisciplinary Research
Marie Céline Loibl

Part V: Development of Technology and Policy
12. Niche-based Approaches to Sustainable Development: Radical Activists versus Strategic Managers
Adrian Smith

13. The Sustainable Transformation of Sanitation
Bas van Vliet

14. The Transition towards Sustainable Production Systems in Austria: A Reflexive Exercise?
Philipp Späth, Harald Rohracher, K. Matthias Weber and Ines Oehme

15. The Transformation of Agriculture: Reflexive Governance for Agrobiodiversity
Franziska Wolff

Part VI: Conclusions
16. Reflexive Governance: A View on an Emerging Path
Jan-Peter Voß, René Kemp and Dierk Bauknecht

Index