Changing climate, changing frames : Dutch water policy frame developments in the context of a rise and fall of attention to climate change

M.J. Vink, D. Boezeman, A. Dewulf, C.J.A.M. Termeer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

58 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Water management and particularly flood defence have a long history of collective action in low-lying countries like the Netherlands. The uncertain but potentially severe impacts of the recent climate change issue (e.g. sea level rise, extreme river discharges, salinisation) amplify the wicked and controversial character of flood safety policy issues. Policy proposals in this area generally involve drastic infrastructural works and long-term investments. They face the difficult challenge of framing problems and solutions in a publicly acceptable manner in ever changing circumstances. In this paper, we analyse and compare (1) how three key policy proposals publicly frame the flood safety issue, (2) the knowledge referred to in the framing and (3) how these frames are rhetorically connected or disconnected as statements in a long-term conversation. We find that (1) framings of policy proposals differ in the way they depict the importance of climate change, the relevant timeframe and the appropriate governance mode; (2) knowledge is selectively mobilised to underpin the different frames and (3) the frames about these proposals position themselves against the background of the previous proposals through rhetorical connections and disconnections. Finally, we discuss how this analysis hints at the importance of processes of powering and puzzling that lead to particular framings towards the public at different historical junctures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)90-101
JournalEnvironmental Science & Policy
Volume30
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Keywords

  • flood control
  • climatic change
  • governance
  • water policy
  • science
  • management
  • delta

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Changing climate, changing frames : Dutch water policy frame developments in the context of a rise and fall of attention to climate change'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this