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Making Sense On Participation: Herrschaft And Participatory Procedures In Administrative Decision-Making

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Chapter Summary

This chapter summarizes the results of a case study on participation in administrative decision-making on the release of genetically modified organisms. The study evolved from a research project on social positioning within communication between government officials and citizens in different legally driven participation procedures. The chapter provides a specific analytical perspective on the case. Focus is on those tasks referring to specific problems from the release of genetically modified plants with respect to more fundamental issue of maintaining and forming public order, and on two completely different ways how public authorities deal with these tasks. It argues that the first approach follows a rather traditional rôle of public authorities as part of Herrschaft and being particularly responsible to contribute to public order. The second is to be interpreted as an expression of technocratic thinking, aiming at a rational organisation of society, which would supersedes such "traditional" social relationships as Herrschaft.

Keywords: administrative decision-making; genetically modified organisms; genetically modified plants; Herrschaft; participation procedures; public authorities; public order



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