Economic Models as Devices of Policy Change: Policy Paradigms, Paradigm Shift, and Performativity

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Can the emergence of a new policy model be a catalyst for a paradigm shift in the overall interpretative framework of how economic policy is conducted within a society? This paper claims that models are understudied as devices used by actors to induce policy change. This paper explores the role of models in Danish economic policy, where, from the 1970s onwards, executive public servants in this area have exclusively been specialists in model design. To understand changes in economic policy, this paper starts with a discussion of whether the notion of paradigm shift is adequate. It then examines the extent to which the performativity approach can help identify macroscopic changes in policy from seemingly microscopic changes in policy models. The concept of performativity is explored as a means of thinking about the constitution of agency directed at policy change. The paper brings this concept into play by arguing that the “performative” embedding of models in institutions is an important aspect of how paradigm shifts unfold that the current literature has neglected.
Can the emergence of a new policy model be a catalyst for a paradigm shift in the overall interpretative framework of how economic policy is conducted within a society? This paper claims that models are understudied as devices used by actors to induce policy change. This paper explores the role of models in Danish economic policy, where, from the 1970s onwards, executive public servants in this area have exclusively been specialists in model design. To understand changes in economic policy, this paper starts with a discussion of whether the notion of paradigm shift is adequate. It then examines the extent to which the performativity approach can help identify macroscopic changes in policy from seemingly microscopic changes in policy models. The concept of performativity is explored as a means of thinking about the constitution of agency directed at policy change. The paper brings this concept into play by arguing that the “performative” embedding of models in institutions is an important aspect of how paradigm shifts unfold that the current literature has neglected.
LanguageEnglish
JournalRegulation & Governance
Volume7
Issue number4
Pages481-495
Number of pages15
ISSN1748-5983
DOIs
StatePublished - 2013

Cite this

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title = "Economic Models as Devices of Policy Change: Policy Paradigms, Paradigm Shift, and Performativity",
abstract = "Can the emergence of a new policy model be a catalyst for a paradigm shift in the overall interpretative framework of how economic policy is conducted within a society? This paper claims that models are understudied as devices used by actors to induce policy change. This paper explores the role of models in Danish economic policy, where, from the 1970s onwards, executive public servants in this area have exclusively been specialists in model design. To understand changes in economic policy, this paper starts with a discussion of whether the notion of paradigm shift is adequate. It then examines the extent to which the performativity approach can help identify macroscopic changes in policy from seemingly microscopic changes in policy models. The concept of performativity is explored as a means of thinking about the constitution of agency directed at policy change. The paper brings this concept into play by arguing that the “performative” embedding of models in institutions is an important aspect of how paradigm shifts unfold that the current literature has neglected.",
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Economic Models as Devices of Policy Change : Policy Paradigms, Paradigm Shift, and Performativity. / Henriksen, Lasse Folke .

In: Regulation & Governance, Vol. 7, No. 4, 2013, p. 481-495.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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