Analysing policy problems: a problem-structuring approach

Robert Hoppe

in The governance of problems

Published by Policy Press

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9781847429629
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303848 | DOI:
Analysing policy problems: a problem-structuring approach

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This chapter addresses the socio-cognitive aspects of problem structuring in defining political environments or task fields from the viewpoint of policy players. From this perspective, the discussion shows it to be useful to distinguish between four types of problem structures: structured, unstructured, and two types of moderately structured problems. The first section develops the perspective of a politics of meaning. It views politics as the collective attempt to control a polity's shared response to the adversities and opportunities of the human condition. The second section gives an overview of how others have approached the social and political analysis of policy issues or problems. The third section discusses properties of structured versus unstructured problems; and analyses how unstructured problems get to be structured through problem decomposition and constraint sequencing.

Keywords: problem structuring; political environments; structured problems; political analysis; constraint sequencing

Chapter.  14007 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Organizations

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