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Credibility and Relevance in Environmental Policy: Measuring Strategies and Performance among Science Assessment Organizations

Ann C. Keller
Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory: J-PART
Vol. 20, No. 2 (April 2010), pp. 357-386
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40732515
Page Count: 30
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Credibility and Relevance in Environmental Policy: Measuring Strategies and Performance among Science Assessment Organizations
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Abstract

Organizations that provide scientific information to policy makers face the difficult challenge of maintaining scientific credibility while establishing their political relevance. A growing body of research examines how assessment organizations meet the potentially competing expectations of science and policy communities. However, existing research has failed to produce generalizable findings. This study draws together theoretical approaches in science studies and organization theory to develop a framework that allows for a comparative analysis of multiple cases. The study compares the organizational strategies of the National Research Council, the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Comparisons among the organizations are made using independent measures of credibility and political relevance. The evidence suggests that organizational strategies do impact assessment effectiveness and that it is possible for organizations to simultaneously achieve scientific credibility and political relevance.

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