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ECN publication
How stakeholder interactions can reduce space for moral considerations in decision making: a contested CCS project in the Netherlands
Cuppen, E.; Brunsting, S.; Pesch, U.; Feenstra, C.F.J.
Published by: Publication date:
ECN Policy Studies 20-1-2017
ECN report number: Document type:
ECN-W--16-045 Article (scientific)
Number of pages:

We analyse the dynamics of a decision-making process on a contested carbon capture and storage project in The Netherlands by investigating the interactions between the involved stakeholders and how these reinforced, or were shaped by, a meta-frame. Our analysis suggests that from the start of the project, the interactions between stakeholders were shaped by, and reinforced, a goal-rational meta-frame. This frame, and the respective interactions, did not function well in aligning project proponents and the local community. For the latter group, issues were at stake that could not be addressed within the goalrational frame, such as moral considerations of procedural and distributive justice. Yet it was a very powerful frame that remained dominant and kept being reproduced throughout the process. Our analysis suggests that policy processes on projects like this should create interactions that leave open the opportunity for divergent, latent frames to become articulated. We identify three challenges for policy and planning of low-carbon technologies concerning the need for frame reflexivity in planning and decision making, the articulation of divergent stakeholder views and the design of stakeholder interactions.

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