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Whose Norms Prevail? Policy Networks, International Organizations, and 'Sustainable Forest Management'


Gale, F and Cadman, T, Whose Norms Prevail? Policy Networks, International Organizations, and 'Sustainable Forest Management', Society and Natural Resources, 27, (2) pp. 170-184. ISSN 0894-1920 (2014) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2014 Taylor & Francis

DOI: doi:10.1080/08941920.2013.840875


This article investigates the origin of international norms, arguing that one pathway is via the strategic action of sector-specific policy networks. Evidence is adduced from an examination of the contested norm of sustainable forest management (SFM). It is argued that a Canadian forestry policy network, under pressure internally and externally to demonstrate its environmental and social credentials, promoted an ‘‘economistic’’ SFM norm in regional negotiations known as the Montreal Process. The article outlines the policy network approach, applies it to the Canadian forest sector, and analyzes how a policy network centered in the Canadian Forest Service and the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers worked to have the network’s preferred conception of SFM internationally endorsed. The article highlights the importance of investigating which social actors champion which international norms and encourages reflexive policymaking by calling into question the degree to which international norms actually reflect a genuine global consensus.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Canada, criteria, forestry, governance, indicators, Montreal Process, norms, policy networks, sustainable
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Political science
Research Field:Comparative government and politics
Objective Division:Law, Politics and Community Services
Objective Group:Other law, politics and community services
Objective Field:Other law, politics and community services not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Gale, F (Professor Fred Gale)
ID Code:92972
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:14
Deposited By:School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2014-07-03
Last Modified:2015-05-01

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