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Ozonskiktet och risksamhället: En studie av den svenska politiska diskussionen rörande ozonskiktet 1968-1992
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Technology and Social Change. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2001 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
The Ozone Layer and Risk Society : A Study of the Swedish Political Discussion Concerning the Ozone Layer 1968-1992 (English)
Abstract [en]

This thesis examines the development of the Swedish political discussion concerning the ozonelayer between 1968 and 1992. The analysis is based on the assumption that the threats against the ozone layer confronted the political system with an issue that called for new ways of thinking about environmental problems. The study draws on two main theoretical perspectives; first, Ulrich Beck's notion of risk society and reflexive modernisation; and second, a social constructivist approach towards knowledge and how environmental issues are understood as societal problems. These two perspectives complements each other, as the former focuses on tendencies on a macro-scale and society's self-understanding, while the latter are concerned with how actors utilise knowledge to interpret environmental problems in order to make them manageable within the political system. Two main sources of material have been used; first, Cabinet bills from the political parties, government bills and rulings from Parliamentary committees; and second, protocols from the Environmental Advisory Council, reports from Special Investigative Commissions, and studies from the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, among others. The latter bodies play the dual role of providing the political actors with policy-relevant scientific knowledge and making suggestions for political compromises.

The study suggests that the discussions regarding the problems concerned with the ozone layer are more complex than could be expected. It makes little sense to claim that the discussions in the political system has gone from mere reacting on problems, to a situation where actors actively reflect upon the interrelations between society and the environment. On the contrary, these two forms - reaction and reflection - overlaps and play different roles in the formation of the goals and the means deemed necessary. Scientific knowledge plays different roles in assisting political actors, when concerned with the construction of the environmental problem, as opposed to developing focused measures. Furthermore, two phases in the development towards ecological modernisation are found. A state-lead phase, where the rationale behind the arguments was societal benefit, was followed by a notion of corporate profitability. These two notions coexisted in the later phase.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköpings universitet , 2001. , 224 p.
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 243
Keyword [en]
Ozone layer, ozone depletion, CFC, environmental politics, risk society, ecological modernisation, reflexive modernisation, political use of scientific knowledge
Keyword [sv]
ozonskiktet, miljöaspekter, miljöpolitik, historia, Sverige, 1968-1992
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-34019Local ID: 20411ISBN: 91-7373-215-XOAI: diva2:254867
Public defence
2001-12-07, Eklundska salen, Hus I, Universitetsområdet Valla, Linköping, 13:15 (Swedish)
Available from: 2009-10-10 Created: 2009-10-10 Last updated: 2014-08-28Bibliographically approved

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Martinsson, Mathias
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