Frameworks of analysis: the institutional approach and the issue-based approach

Shizuka Oshitani

in Global Warming Policy in Japan and Britain

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780719069383
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781701546 | DOI:
Frameworks of analysis: the institutional approach and the issue-based approach

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Global warming policies in Japan and Britain exhibit both similarities and differences. Drawing on G. P. Freeman's contrast between the ‘national style approach’ and the ‘policy sector approach’, this chapter focuses on two strands of the literature. One is (new) institutionalism and the other is the ‘policy determines politics’ school, or what is known as the ‘issue-based approach’. The institutional approach looks at different characters of national institutions and predicts policy differences; the issue-based approach looks at the constraints on rational actors arising from the attributes of a policy issue and implies cross-national policy similarities. The discussion of institutionalism is linked with the literature on corporatism, here understood as describing a form of institution that can be contrasted with non-corporatism, or pluralism. In this study, Japan is seen as having important institutional characteristics of corporatism in terms of analysing environmental policy, and Britain those of pluralism. The chapter also looks at four aspects of policy: the speed of policy change, policy content, the degree of policy integration, and policy stringency.

Keywords: global warming; Japan; Britain; institutions; corporatism; pluralism; environmental policy; issue-based approach; institutional approach; institutionalism

Chapter.  8830 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environment

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