Den globale opvarmnings komplekse styringsudfordring: Iagttagelser af det komplekse styringsfelt på klimaområdet

Peter Bastian & Kirsten Ellegaard Jørgensen

Student thesis: Master thesis


The following graduate thesis is an observation of governance in the complex field that is management in a climate-focused paradigm. The analysis focuses on three parts on the communicative area; the state, the company and the individual and their interrelations. The company will be exemplified by the Danish dairy producer Arla. The theoretical foundation is constructed of Michel Foucault’s thoughts and perspectives on power combined with Niklas Luhmann’s theory of social systems. The thesis analyses the power structures that are evident when observing the state’s ambitions of governing. In their communication the state installs a threat of what is to be, if nothing is done to reduce CO2-emissions. The communication it self is grounded in a rational of biopolitics and safety. It is concluded that the state utilizes a variety of power technologies. Thus sovereign as well as governmentality and disciplinary power can be observed upon analyzing the state’s attempts to govern respectively the company and the individual. Essentially the state utilizes hybrids of power in their governance. Arla, representing companies in general, is analyzed by discussing their initiatives on the climate area. The company seems to develop their own technologies of the self, thus defining their own governing. Regarding the individual, it seems evident that the company tries to influence the individual through a campaign called and by offering advice on how to reduce CO2- emissions on their webpage. Furthermore it is analyzed that Arla is an active partner in creating the knowledge that the state bases their government upon. This is investigated further by introducing Luhmann’s theory on social movements and protest communication. Through this theoretical lens Arla can be observed as fueling the social movements. In conclusion; when observing management in the climate-focused paradigm, it is pivotal to acknowledge the complexity of climate communication as well as the many centers in society from where power can rise. Thus the role of the company in this paradigm is not fixed.

EducationsMSocSc in Political Communication and Managment, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2009
Number of pages126