A Framework for Analyzing Information Flows in Public Policy Decision-making: A Move towards Building Sustainable Policy Instruments

  •  Chad McGuire    


The purpose of this paper is to explain a framework that focuses on information flows as a means of understanding public policy decision-making, with a specific emphasis on information relating to sustainable development. The goal of this framework is to further aid in identifying and explaining the extent to which sustainability goals are being implemented in public policy decisions. The suggestion is that by focusing on the information flows directly related to sustainable information, instances can be isolated where specific pieces of information are not making their way to final decision-making processes, or alternatively, where new information interferes with sustainable information becoming part of the final decision-making process. This paper begins with an overview of the theoretical framework in the first part, and then gives an overview of how the framework can be applied to sustainability information. It concludes by suggesting the use of the framework can offer substantial insight into questions of sustainable policy development. While the approach described offers the potential to better understand organizational decision-making dynamics, the true value of the framework will lie in its future use to both predict and assess the relationship between sustainable outcomes and related decision-making processes.

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