Contenu du sommaire

Revue International Review of Public Policy Mir@bel
Numéro vol. 3, no 3, 2021
Texte intégral en ligne Accessible sur l'internet
  • Understanding Gender Expertise in the Post-Truth Era: Media Representations of Gender-Based Analysis Plus in Canada - Stephanie Paterson, Francesca Scala accès libre avec résumé en anglais
    In this paper, we explore the post-truth era as a contextual factor in how gender expertise is constituted, challenged, and defended in policy discourse in Canadian context. Using post-structural policy analysis to explore the contours of media scrutiny and the resulting debate about gender-based analysis plus (GBA+), Canada's approach to gender mainstreaming, we reveal that it was ultimately a debate about the role of gender/intersectional expertise within government. We demonstrate that GBA+, and the gender expertise informing it, was often represented in mainstream media as either a “political intervention” or as a “technical tool”, both of which reinforce traditional representations of policy expertise, including political neutrality and professional competence, which, in the past, have been used to justify the exclusion of “other” forms of knowledge. In unpacking these representations, we suggest that, even among critics of post-truth claims, post-truth discourse offers a new vocabulary, anchored in what Ringrose (2018, 653) refers to as “post-truth anti-feminism”, which emphasizes not simply identity politics, but also potential harm resulting from interventions based on feminist knowledge. We also suggest that such claims have resulted in a distancing between gender expertise and feminism, thus contributing to the erasure of feminist knowledge in policy contexts.
  • Evidence, interests and argumentation: an environmental policy controversy in a small New Zealand town - Peter Skilling, Patrick Barrett, Priya Kurian accès libre avec résumé en anglais
    This article examines interactions between different forms of authoritative knowledge and evidence in a public dispute over an environmental problem. It draws on a case set in a small coastal town in New Zealand where the local community had expressed concern over the degradation of a river-mouth estuary caused by catchment management works built in the 1950s to support the farming sector. The estuary historically had been an important economic and cultural treasure for Indigenous Māori, and by the mid-20th century had become a valued recreational and fishing resource for the broader community. This article analyses a moment of dispute in the 1980s between those who called for the restoration of the estuary and those who wished to maintain the status quo. Drawing on an analysis of official reports, media coverage and other public documents, the article shows how the competing parties and their constructions of the collective good accorded authority and weight to specific histories, forms of evidence and kinds of people. The article understands the case not as a dispute between “the people” and “the experts” but rather as a moment where competing blocs drew on specific grammars of justification in their attempts to align their claims with the collective good.
  • Re-performance: a critical and reparative methodology for everyday expertise and data practice in policy knowledge - Susan Oman accès libre avec résumé en anglais
    This paper introduces and develops an innovative re-performance methodology to reappraise tensions in evidence-based policy-making (EBPM). It conceptualises ‘re-performance' as re-enacting and/or replicating aspects of another's research, extending analyses of default, established methods of knowledge-for-policy. Re-performance is an under-utilised concept and this paper synthesises its assorted origins across humanities disciplines to demonstrate its conceptual utility for methods in research on research. Application of the re-performance methodology involves drawing from content analyses and ethnographic methods to understand the context of knowledge production as cultural production, and critical theory lenses to analyse these effects. The methodology was developed over two research projects on well-being and inequality metrics; both are presented to establish this approach as one that was developed in contestation over data and everyday knowledge (Case 1), that can be applied in a way that is reparative (Case 2), and consequently is of use to understanding current international data-policy controversies and crises. Overall, this article demonstrates re-performance as a methodology that recognises complexity in incorporating the social practices of everyday knowledge and expertise in a framework for policy studies in which the focus on data-in-research as performative reveals the effects in and on the cultures they describe.
  • Policy expertise and culture: the case of “civil sexuality” in Iran. - Elaheh Mohammadi, Anna Durnova accès libre avec résumé en anglais
    Modern governments which have placed expertise at the core of their governing have always worked with cultural context so as to raise arguments for their policies and to legitimize them. While traditional approaches to culture in public policy have marginalized it as a discursive battlefield, this article offers new insights into the role of culture in policy expertise. In order to do so, it proposes “civil sexuality” as a conceptual lens through which to discuss how expertise makes use of culture to frame a policy and to support its legitimacy. In the analysis of the Iranian policy debate, civil sexuality serves to show how the government normalizes women's sexual behavior as part of Islamic culture and how it integrates this into the Iranian family-planning program. The analysis shows that, despite an apparently progressive view on sexual health – demonstrated through sexual education, unprecedented acknowledgment of women's sexual desire and encouragement of an active sexual role – in fact, the Islamic Republic is implementing an illiberal family program that serves its recent pronatalist and nationalist agenda. We draw conclusions from the results of our analysis for the way in which social practices – such as sexual practices – become normalized through a specific combination of expert knowledge and cultural context.
  • Book Review

  • Expertise on the Anglophone Crisis in Cameroon: A Hybrid Cultural Boundary Approach - Ruth Mireille Manga Edimo accès libre avec résumé en anglais
    How can we understand policy deadlocks and inactions embedded in the Anglophone crisis in Cameroon? The context sparked by corporatist demands of lawyers, teachers, and students in 2016 has included persistent rising numbers of killings, human rights issues, unending military battles, and contestations on multiple policy attempts to stop the crisis. The article looks at the Anglophone crisis as an issue of policy expertise. Policy expertise encompasses discursive practices that scan the crisis as a site of policy controversies producing deadlocks and inactions. It departs from critical policy studies towards expertise while considering the cultural context as a lens to observe and interpret expertise as a social relation. It, however, goes further, shoring up contestations and public distrust brought about by cultural differences and cultural knowledge. It places a stronger emphasis on the “historical context” to supplement the cultural context of expertise and encompass new cultural boundaries. The analysis stems from a critical postcolonial perspective, while introducing the ‘hybrid' cultural contexts, ‘hybrid' institutional designs, and ‘virtual' discursive spaces which acknowledge the specific cultural character of a case study in the Global South. Using the interpretive methodology, the analysis has relied on documented history, policy discourses in different media, and interviews.