Congratulations to Professor Michael LaBelle whose article “The Power of Policy Regimes: Explaining Shale Gas Policy Divergence in Bulgaria and Poland” was published in the Review of Policy Research.
The Review of Policy Research (RPR) is an international peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of research and analysis examining the politics and policy of science and technology, ranked in the Q1 in three categories - Geography, Planning and Development; Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law; and Public Administration – in the SCImago Journal & Country Rank.
Abstract of Professor LaBelle’s article:
Shale gas policies vary significantly across Europe, notably in Russia-dependent Central Eastern Europe. Most strikingly, Bulgaria banned shale gas, whereas Poland remains firmly committed to fostering it despite its drawbacks. This article uses a policy regime approach to explain the shale gas puzzle. Drawing on a large set of interviews, the piece investigates regime strength as the causal factor that explains the adoption of specific shale gas laws (Poland) or a fracking ban (Bulgaria). It finds that the Polish shale gas policy regime was strong, based on a powerful political narrative and characterized by an institutional process ensuring the buy-in of actors from relevant policy levels and subsystems. In Bulgaria the policy regime was weak, failed to co–opt key stakeholders, and was institutionally ill-designed. The findings show how different degrees of policy regime strength translate into diverging policy trajectories in two countries that otherwise operate in similar environments.