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Dialogues of the deaf in Dutch eel management policy. Explaining controversy and deadlock with argumentative discourse analysis

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Scientists claim the European eel stock is in a state of crisis. Although stakeholders in the Netherlands agree, also upon the need for action, for a long time no concrete measures were decided upon. Drastic protection measures were only taken 70 years after the first warning signs and 11 years after explicit advice by ICES. Our argumentative discourse analysis shows that ‘dialogue of the deaf’ among discourse coalitions explains the deadlocked policy process. Argumentative discourse analysis not only contributes to a better understanding of knowledge utilisation in controversial fish stock management, but also to conflict resolution in this field.
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Keywords: European eel [Anguilla anguilla]; advocacy coalitions; controversy; discourses; knowledge utilisation

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2013

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