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Learning in iterated consultation procedures – The example of the German electricity grid demand planning

Simon Fink and Eva Ruffing

Utilities Policy, 2020, vol. 65, issue C

Abstract: Public participation has become a conditio sine qua non when planning infrastructure projects. However, current research is concerned with one-time experiments and can not elucidate long-term effects of iterated consultations. Our argument is that consultations have learning effects over time. We test our argument using the German procedure for electricity grid demand planning as a case. Using dictionary coding and a quantitative analysis, supplemented by a qualitative text analysis, we show that participants get better in framing their contributions by using the “right” keywords. Hence, consultations evolve over time and improve in terms of the output legitimacy they generate.

Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jup.2020.101065

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