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Free Content A part and yet apart: how third sector visions of carbon reduction are both welcomed and marginalised

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The role of the third sector in promoting action on carbon reduction is often that of a third party, lobbying and working from the sidelines and occupying ‘green niches’ (Seyfang, 2010) without direct access to levers of power. This article examines how visions of low-carbon futures promoted by third sector actors are both integrated and marginalised at a wider institutional scale. Focusing on efforts to encourage environmental sustainability by organisations within three northern English cities, it highlights how a process of ‘integrative marginalisation’ may be observed, in which radical visions of a low-carbon future are simultaneously embraced and excluded at an institutional scale. Integrative marginalisation displays four salient features: initial welcome and acceptance; relatively small investments of support; the exclusion of substantial changes from mainstream decision making; and the assertion of institutional priorities that limit potential action. Integrative marginalisation thus raises questions about the conditions required to prompt more fundamental change.

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Keywords: advocacy; institutional change; integrative marginalisation; sustainability

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Sheffield, UK

Publication date: July 2020

This article was made available online on January 8, 2020 as a Fast Track article with title: "A part and yet apart: how third sector visions of carbon reduction are both welcomed and marginalised".

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  • Voluntary Sector Review publishes high-quality, peer-reviewed, accessible papers on third sector research, policy and practice. It is an invaluable cutting-edge resource for all those researching or working in the fast-growing voluntary, community and wider third sectors.

    The journal covers the full range of issues relevant to voluntary sector studies, including: definitional and theoretical debates; management and organisational development; financial and human resources; philanthropy; volunteering and employment; regulation and charity law; service delivery; civic engagement; industry and sub-sector dimensions; relations with other sectors; social enterprise; evaluation and impact. Voluntary Sector Review covers voluntary sector studies from a variety of disciplines, including sociology, social policy, politics, psychology, economics, business studies, social anthropology, philosophy and ethics. The journal includes work from the UK and Europe, and beyond, where cross-national comparisons are illuminating. With dedicated expert policy and practice sections, Voluntary Sector Review also provides an essential forum for the exchange of ideas and new thinking.

    Rigorous and stimulating, Voluntary Sector Review is an indispensable tool for everyone who values empirically-grounded, theoretically-informed and policy-relevant reviews of the future direction of the voluntary sector.

    Editors: Nick Acheson (Trinity College, University of Dublin, Ireland), Bernard Harris (University of Strathclyde, UK), Rob Macmillan, (University of Birmingham, UK)

    The journal is published in association with the Voluntary Sector Studies Network (VSSN) and a print copy of the journal is a membership benefit.

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