When Boundary Organisations Fail: Identifying Scientists and Civil Servants in L’Aquila Earthquake Trial

Published by Science as Culture 30.2 (2020): pp. 237-260.

Author: Federico Brandmayr

 

Notwithstanding the alleged crisis of expertise, scientists increasingly act as expert advisors to governments, while organisations at the boundary between science and policy multiply. Experts in such contexts are often subject to contradictory injunctions, associated with the role of either scientist or public official. Role conflict is particularly intense when decisions informed by scientific advice have negative consequences. In these situations, boundary-work is ubiquitous, as scientists deny responsibility by dissociating themselves from policymaking and victims contest such claims.

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