Time for a Bioeconomy? NEW PUBLICATION!

Good news! “Away from fossil-fuels and toward a bioeconomy: Knowledge versatility for public policy?” is finally out!

This article is published in Environment and Planning C. The paper outlines an approach for a policy steering of a complex socio-technological transition, in this case, away from overly dependence on fossil fuels and toward a bio-economy. This is a follow up research on applying the framework developed in our piece on IWRM (with Andrea Gerlak) on the new issue of a bio-economy transition. The argument is the same — one needs to broaden up the debate on a transition to better energy governance by adding value-based (moral) knowledge as well as practical knowledge to the arena where so far mostly scientific knowledge has enjoyed legitimacy. But in this latter article there is much more advice for policy makers to make epistemic pluralism happen! Below is the abstract.


In the face of energy security and climate change, and with technological advances, many industrial
countries have embraced the transition to a bioeconomy – an economy based on energy,
chemicals and materials obtained from biomass. However, the policy and academic discourses
on a bioeconomy transition suggest growing controversy around its social, environmental and
ethical impacts. In this article, we apply an epistemic forms framework to better understand the
scope and extent of the bioeconomy debate. We find that industry and governments take a
narrow approach to a bioeconomy and tend to view it exclusively as a technical concept. We
argue that the discursive and practical dimensions of the transition would shed light on the issues
of what type of a bioeconomy to strive for, through which procedures and with what impacts for
diverse stakeholders. We conclude with a set of recommendations related to a bioeconomy


Assistant Professor at International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), The Hague, The Netherlands

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