Over-flowing with issues? Following the political trajectories of flooding

Andrew Donaldson, Stuart Lane, Neil Ward, Sarah J. Whatmore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


The paper is based on a research project that engaged with and intervened in flood risk management in national policy and in two localities. Building on recent work in STS, we develop a framework for political analysis that complements existing understandings of environmental governance by focusing on the materiality of an issue and the ways in which it is articulated through various sites, shifting between different political modalities (its political trajectory). Each modality represents a different way in which an issue is framed such that it is opened to questioning and contestation, or subject to closure and containment. We conclude that differing understandings of what makes an environmental issue political mean that researchers need to pay close attention to how their own work is political and to different meanings and constitutions of ‘the public’, as well as looking for more ways of engaging with the politics of environmental issues in different modalities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)603-618
JournalEnvironment and Planning C: Government and Policy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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