chapter  9
18 Pages

Public Policy-Making and the Management of Coevolution


The previous chapter focused on the coevolution between different types of systems. It was argued that a coevolutionary revision of the anthropocentric perspective can help with understanding the occurrence of unintended, unforeseen and sometimes unfavourable events. It allows for a change in focus from the policy actor or a network of policy actors to a contingent focus that highlights policy actors who are entangled in a pattern of mutual interactions between them and nearby systems, including physical systems. These interactions determine the degree of freedom available to policy actors in making their decisions. A relatively small number of events or an unforeseen change event can cause policy actors to lose the initiative and to consequently be dragged along by the events (see also the discussion in Chapter 5).