Thursday, 1 December 2016

Economic crisis shaping alternative narratives (#journal)

The economic crisis as a game changer? Exploring the role of social construction in sustainability transitions

This paper takes a transition perspective to explore, from a Western European viewpoint, how the economic crisis is actually viewed through a variety of interpretations and responded to through a range of practices. The authors argue that framing societal phenomena such as the economic crisis as "symptoms of transition" through alternative narratives and actions can give rise to the potential for (seemingly) short-term pressures to become game changers. Game changers are defined as the combination of: specific events, the subsequent or parallel framing of events in systemic terms by engaged societal actors, and (eventually) the emergence of (diverse) alternative narratives and practices (in response to the systemic framing of events). Game changers, when understood in these terms, help to orient, legitimize, guide, and accelerate deep changes in society. They conclude that such dynamics in which game changers gain momentum might also come to play a critical role in transitions.

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