How neoliberalism and ecological modernization shaped environmental policy in Australia

Coffey, Brian & Marston, Greg (2013) How neoliberalism and ecological modernization shaped environmental policy in Australia. Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning, 15(2), pp. 179-199.

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‘Sustainability’ provides the dominant frame within which environmental policy debate occurs, notwithstanding its divergent meanings. However, how different discourses combine to shape understanding of the environment, the causes of environmental issues, and the responses required, is less clear cut. Drawing primarily on the approach to critical discourse analysis (CDA) developed by Fairclough, this paper explores the way in which neoliberal and ecologically modern discourses combine to shape environmental policy. Environmental scholars have made relatively little use of this approach to CDA to date, despite the significant interest in the discursive aspects of environmental issues, and its wide use in other areas of policy interest. Using the case of environmental policy-making in Victoria, Australia, this paper illustrates how neoliberalism and weak ecological modernization represented sustainability in ways that seriously limited the importance of environmental issues.

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10 citations in Scopus
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9 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 66371
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: discourse analysis, environmental policy
DOI: 10.1080/1523908X.2012.746868
ISSN: 1522-7200
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: The definitive version is available at
Deposited On: 21 Jan 2014 02:36
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2014 07:27

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