|Titre :||Understanding the science-policy nexus in Belgium: An analysis of the drug policy debate (1996-2003) (2013)|
|Auteurs :||J. TIEBERGHIEN ; T. DECORTE|
|Type de document :||Article : Périodique|
|Dans :||Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy (Vol.20, n°3, June 2013)|
|Article en page(s) :||241-248|
|Discipline :||SAN (Santé publique / Public health)|
Thésaurus TOXIBASERECHERCHE ; POLITIQUE ; EVOLUTION ; POUVOIRS PUBLICS
Aims: 'Evidence-based policy' proposes that policy makers should be informed by scientists, so that policy will reflect accurate factual knowledge rather than political biases. Unfortunately, the science-policy nexus is much more complicated, especially in a heavily politicized domain. This article aims to understand the complex relationship between policy and science in the drug field in a more meaningful manner.
Methods: Using the Belgian drug policy debate (1996-2003) as a case study, we critically explore the role of (scientific) knowledge in this debate. The methodology consists of a discourse analysis of submissions, hearings and parliamentary/government reports.
Findings: An examination of how scientific knowledge was used in policy documents has demonstrated rather strong utilization. However, utilization was often subordinate to the complexity of the policy-making process involving not only scientific knowledge but also interests, electoral ambitions, etc. Likewise, scientific knowledge was also shaped and distorted by conflicting values and interests.
Conclusion: Consistent with the models of knowledge utilization, scientific knowledge has been just one element in the policy making process characterized above all by competing values and interests. The principle of 'evidence-based' policy clearly faces significant challenges and therefore becomes a delicate balancing act between ideal and reality.
|Domaine :||Drogues illicites / Illicit drugs|
|Affiliation :||Institute for Social Drug Research, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium|