Reframing Democratic Governance
Chapter 3: Framing the regulatory space
In theory, social framing can be used to narrow down the field of inquiry into the regulatory space and holds out the prospect of being able to draw reasonable general inferences about what is happening to all systems of authority on the basis of this limited inquiry. Its application rests on the selection of frames. This chapter discusses the criteria for their selection. It also discusses their suitability for drawing more general inferences. The selection has to steer between two points. First, the frames cannot be too broad. Goals that are too general will tell us nothing. Secondly, and conversely, the frames cannot be too narrow. If they are cast too narrowly, too much will be left out of the analysis for drawing valid conclusions. At the same time the frames selected must characterize the different domains of authority in ways that reflect essential features of each.
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