Connections and Tensions Between Nationalist and Sustainability Discourses in the Scottish Legislative Process

Andrea Ross, Rhys Jones

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Abstract

This article illustrates how sustainability and nationalist discourses have operated together in practice in Scotland. Potential connections and tensions between nationalist and sustainability discourses are identified and used to analyse the events leading up to the passage of the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 and the Regulatory Reform (Scotland) Act 2014. The analysis reveals how in certain contexts, the tensions and connections between sustainability and nationalist discourses can align to reinforce transformative initiatives while in other contexts, the tensions can lead to initiatives being watered down or set aside. The article concludes that more could be done to emphasize the connections between the two discourses. Engagement at the level of ‘nation’ can lead to sustainability discourses that are more attuned to nationalist values, increased public understanding, and acceptance of sustainable development, as well as additional opportunities for debate, public participation, and education
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)228-256
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Law and Society
Volume43
Issue number2
Early online date10 May 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jun 2016

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