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Article

To See, or Not to See, That Is the Question: Studying Dutch Experimentalist Energy Transition Governance through an Evolutionary Lens

1
Center for Urban and Regional Research, Department of Geography, Planning & Environment, Nijmegen School of Management, Radboud University Nijmegen, 6525 AJ Nijmegen, The Netherlands
2
Tilburg Center for Regional Law and Governance, Department of Public Law and Governance, Tilburg Law School, Tilburg University, 5037 AB Tilburg, The Netherlands
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Kristof Van Assche and Monica Gruezmacher Rosas
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1540; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031540
Received: 18 November 2021 / Revised: 20 January 2022 / Accepted: 25 January 2022 / Published: 28 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Policy and Governance: Evolutionary Perspectives)
Experimentalist forms of governance have burgeoned across policy areas and institutional contexts in recent years. Recognizing that experimentalist forms of governance can evolve along a plethora of distinct pathways, this paper inquires how the evolutionary nature of experimentalism can be explored in greater depth. Linking the framework of experimentalist governance to that of Evolutionary Governance Theory (EGT), the paper identifies three driving mechanisms of contingency in experimentalism: governance being (1) self-referential, (2) rooted in observation, and (3) steered by dependencies. The paper then refers to recent efforts in the realm of energy transition governance in the Netherlands to illustrate how these contingency mechanisms can help to interrogate the variegated evolutionary pathways that experimentalist governance may have in practice. Building on this Dutch empirical context, the paper puts forward evolutionary path- and context-mapping as a fruitful tool for identifying and disentangling the myriad of pathways along which experimentalism may manifest itself. View Full-Text
Keywords: experimentalist governance; evolutionary governance; contingency; evolutionary pathways; path- and context-mapping; regional energy transition; The Netherlands experimentalist governance; evolutionary governance; contingency; evolutionary pathways; path- and context-mapping; regional energy transition; The Netherlands
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MDPI and ACS Style

Gerritsen, M.; Kooij, H.-J.; Groenleer, M.; van der Krabben, E. To See, or Not to See, That Is the Question: Studying Dutch Experimentalist Energy Transition Governance through an Evolutionary Lens. Sustainability 2022, 14, 1540. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031540

AMA Style

Gerritsen M, Kooij H-J, Groenleer M, van der Krabben E. To See, or Not to See, That Is the Question: Studying Dutch Experimentalist Energy Transition Governance through an Evolutionary Lens. Sustainability. 2022; 14(3):1540. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031540

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gerritsen, Martijn, Henk-Jan Kooij, Martijn Groenleer, and Erwin van der Krabben. 2022. "To See, or Not to See, That Is the Question: Studying Dutch Experimentalist Energy Transition Governance through an Evolutionary Lens" Sustainability 14, no. 3: 1540. https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031540

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