The governance of unsustainability: ecology and democracy after the post-democratic turn

Ingolfur Bluhdorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

103 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Starting from the diagnosis of a profound reconfiguration since the second half of the 1980s of the normative foundations of contemporary eco-political discourses, the theory of post-ecologist politics has conceptualised eco-politics in advanced modern consumer societies as the politics of unsustainability. How the politics of unsustainability is organised and executed in practical terms is explored and the theory of post-ecologist politics is extended to suggest that, in the wake of a modernisation-induced post-democratic turn, democratic values and the innovative modes of decentralised, participatory government which, up to the present, are widely hailed as the key towards a genuinely legitimate, effective and efficient environmental policy are metamorphosing into tools for managing the condition of sustained ecological and social unsustainability. Analysis of this governance of unsustainability reveals a new twist in the notoriously difficult relationship between democracy and ecology.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16-36
Number of pages21
JournalEnvironmental Politics
Volume22
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Keywords

  • governance and policy design
  • environment and sustainability

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