Throwing Discourses in the Garbage Can: The Case of Swedish ICT Policy

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Throwing Discourses in the Garbage Can: The Case of Swedish ICT Policy

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Publication Article, peer reviewed scientific
Title Throwing Discourses in the Garbage Can: The Case of Swedish ICT Policy
Author(s) Hall, Patrik
Date 2008
English abstract
Swedish ICT policy has been characterised by abstract discourses which focus on dramatic transformations due to the coming of the “information society”. But Swedish ICT policy has also been characterised by decisions de-coupled from the discourse, as well as fragile efforts towards implementation. This article analyses the linkage between discursive power and fragmented policy-making in contemporary politics. A Kingdoninspired multiple streams framework is used for analysing the impact of discourses upon policy solutions, since other analytical strategies are too (implicitly) rational. In the case of Swedish ICT policy, it is shown that the visionary discourse of the information society strongly frames problems and solutions, but that the presence of contradictory discourses of steering makes it easier for decision makers to get rid of their own responsibility for practical actions through de-coupling of rhetorical, organisational and decision-making activities. The outcome is a political system where elite discourses mainly contribute to organisational identity-building, and prospects for reconstructed organisational power among policy makers on different steering levels.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/19460171.2008.9518530 (link to publisher's fulltext)
Publisher Routledge
Host/Issue Critical Policy Studies;1
Volume 2
ISSN 1750-8762
Pages 25-44
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES::Social sciences
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/9209 (link to this page)

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