Moving Outside or Inside? Objectification and Reflexivity in the Governance of Socio-Technical Systems

Smith, Adrian and Stirling, Andy (2007) Moving Outside or Inside? Objectification and Reflexivity in the Governance of Socio-Technical Systems. Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning, 9 (3-4). pp. 351-373. ISSN 1523-908X

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Abstract

Two contrasting, ideal-typical conceptualizations of the relations between governance and socio-technical change are developed, based on different considerations of the roles and links between social appraisal and social commitment in governance. 'Governance on the outside' objectifies the socio-technical and is managerial in approach. 'Governance on the inside' is more reflexive about the role of governance in co-constituting the socio-technical and, consequently, more overtly political. Each conceptualization lends itself to contrasting strategies for dealing with uncertainty, ambiguity and power. Both forms exist to varying degrees in specific instances of socio-technical governance. Tensions between imperfect attempts to reconcile contradictions between the two drive governance dynamics. This paper develops a conceptual framework to help understand these dynamics.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Depositing User: Adrian Smith
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 21:07
Last Modified: 31 May 2012 14:35
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/29598
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