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Ambiguity in Problem Framing as a Barrier to Collective Actions: Some Hints from Groundwater Protection Policy in the Apulia Region

Giordano, R; Brugnach, M; Pluchinotta, I; (2017) Ambiguity in Problem Framing as a Barrier to Collective Actions: Some Hints from Groundwater Protection Policy in the Apulia Region. Group Decision and Negotiation , 26 (5) pp. 911-932. 10.1007/s10726-016-9519-1. Green open access

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Abstract

Differences in problem framing and understanding are unavoidable in multi-actor decision-making processes, deeming ambiguous problem definitions and actions. The presence of ambiguity may have diverse implications. On the one hand, a diversity in frames can enhance the co-production of knowledge offering opportunities for innovative solutions. On the other hand, the presence of ambiguity can be a source of discrepancies or conflict in a group, hampering the implementation and/or reducing the effectiveness of environmental policy. This work demonstrates that neglecting ambiguity in problem framing leads decision-actors to simplify the interaction space by ignoring the role of some of the other decision-actors and/or making wrong assumptions about their mental models. Moreover, they act as if the system is as simple as the decision-actors presume it to be. To demonstrate these hypotheses, a Causal Loop Diagram method was implemented to investigate the policy resistance mechanisms hampering the implementation of sustainable groundwater abstraction policy in the Apulia Region (Southern Italy).

Type: Article
Title: Ambiguity in Problem Framing as a Barrier to Collective Actions: Some Hints from Groundwater Protection Policy in the Apulia Region
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s10726-016-9519-1
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10726-016-9519-1
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Problem framing, Ambiguity analysis, Policy analysis, Causal Loop Diagram
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10103576
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