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BSE: risk, science and governance$
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Patrick van Zwanenberg and Erik Millstone

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780198525813

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198525813.001.0001

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(p.1) Chapter 1 Introduction
BSE: risk, science and governance

Patrick van Zwanenberg

Erik Millstone

Oxford University Press

The BSE saga is characterized as having been at the leading edge of a more general wave of science-based risk policy crises, all of which were characterized by pervasive and profound scientific uncertainties as well as social and economic conflicts of interest. The approach in this book is to reveal the politics that underpinned judgements and decisions that were represented as if they were based on, and only on, sound science. By exploring the extent to which it is possible to disentangle science from politics, this chapter analyses how BSE policy decisions were taken. It provides the resources with which to clarify the conditions for scientific and democratic legitimacy.

Keywords:   BSE, policy challenge, science, politics, scientific legitimacy, democratic legitimacy

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