In this article I study the constraints and opportunities available to decision-makers in an institutional context
(a county council), by analyzing the deliberative process that led to the rejection of an application for exploratory fracking.
Drawing on a corpus of 130,000 words, I intend to develop the theorization of argumentation in institutional contexts initiated in
pragma-dialectics (van Eemeren, 2010) by drawing on philosopher John Searle’s (2010) concept of “deontic power”. Illustrating both the restrictive and
enabling force of the institutional context, my analysis shows that, while decisions which are in keeping with institutional rules
are legitimate in the sense of being legal, the reasonableness of the institutional context itself cannot be taken for granted.
With various institutional rules in place seeming to obstruct rather than facilitate a rational decision outcome, and a local
decision, democratically arrived at, subsequently legally overturned by central government, it can be argued that bias against
local democracy was in this case built into (legal) institutional design.
2013 “Argument, deliberation, dialectic and the nature of the political: A CDA perspective”. Political Studies Review 11 (3): 336–344.
2015 “A dialectical profile for the evaluation of practical arguments”. In B. Garssen, D. Godden, G. Mitchell & A. F. Snoeck Henkemans (Eds.), Rozenberg Quarterly. Proceedings of the 8th International Conference of the International Society for the Study of Argumentation. Amsterdam: SicSat. Available from: [URL]
2016 “Evaluating policy as practical argument: the public debate over the first UK Austerity Budget”. Critical Discourse Studies 13(1): 57–77.
2018a “Deliberative discourse”. In The Routledge Handbook of Critical Discourse Analysis, ed. by John Richardson, and John Flowerdew, 242–256. London: Routledge.
2018b “Conductive argumentation in the UK fracking debate”. In Argumentation and Inference: Proceedings of the 2nd European Conference on Argumentation, Fribourg 2017, Vol. II1, ed. by Steve Oswald, and Didier Maillat, 297–310. London: College Publications.
forthcoming. “Is there such a thing as a conductive argument?” In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference of the International Society for the Study of Argumentation. Amsterdam: SicSat.
2016 “Costs Report to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government”. At [URL]
1994Critical Rationalism: A Restatement and Defence. Chicago: Open Court.
2006Out of Error. Further Essays on Critical Rationalism. London: Routledge.
2013Deduktivistische Entscheidungsﬁndung. In Kritischer Rationalismus heute. Zur Aktuaklität de Philosophie Karl Poppers, ed. by R. Neck, and H. Stelzer, 45–78. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang. German translation of “Deductivist Decision Making” (unpublished MS).
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 27 november 2023. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers.
Any errors therein should be reported to them.