Technology legitimation in the public discourse: applying the pillars of legitimacy on GM food

Sikke R. Jansma*, Jordy F. Gosselt, Kimberly Kuipers, Menno D.T. de Jong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

31 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The public sphere, reflected by the public discourse, is an important domain for the legitimation of technology. In the institutional literature, four pillars of legitimacy are distinguished: normative, cognitive, regulative, and pragmatic. The aim of this study was to investigate to what extent these pillars can be used as a framework for analysing the legitimation of technological innovations in the public discourse. We conducted a qualitative media analysis of the case of GM food in the Netherlands, analysing 287 articles from nine Dutch newspapers in the period of 1996–2016. The results show that the pillars provide insight into legitimacy in a multi-dimensional way and serve as a structure for the dynamics of legitimation processes. Regarding GM food, the public debate was pre-dominantly negative, with a strong focus on the normative pillar. Emotional rhetoric exceeded knowledge and understanding (cognitive pillar) of GM food. The regulative and pragmatic pillars were hardly addressed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalTechnology Analysis and Strategic Management
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print/First online - 2 Aug 2019

Fingerprint

Discourse
GM food
Legitimation
Legitimacy
Technological innovation
Emotion
Public sphere
Rhetoric
Media analysis
The Netherlands

Keywords

  • UT-Hybrid-D
  • Legitimacy
  • media analysis
  • public discourse
  • GM food

Cite this

@article{4aa3ec06bc0d4036b45801778924a3a3,
title = "Technology legitimation in the public discourse: applying the pillars of legitimacy on GM food",
abstract = "The public sphere, reflected by the public discourse, is an important domain for the legitimation of technology. In the institutional literature, four pillars of legitimacy are distinguished: normative, cognitive, regulative, and pragmatic. The aim of this study was to investigate to what extent these pillars can be used as a framework for analysing the legitimation of technological innovations in the public discourse. We conducted a qualitative media analysis of the case of GM food in the Netherlands, analysing 287 articles from nine Dutch newspapers in the period of 1996–2016. The results show that the pillars provide insight into legitimacy in a multi-dimensional way and serve as a structure for the dynamics of legitimation processes. Regarding GM food, the public debate was pre-dominantly negative, with a strong focus on the normative pillar. Emotional rhetoric exceeded knowledge and understanding (cognitive pillar) of GM food. The regulative and pragmatic pillars were hardly addressed.",
keywords = "UT-Hybrid-D, Legitimacy, media analysis, public discourse, GM food",
author = "Jansma, {Sikke R.} and Gosselt, {Jordy F.} and Kimberly Kuipers and {de Jong}, {Menno D.T.}",
note = "Taylor & Francis deal",
year = "2019",
month = "8",
day = "2",
doi = "10.1080/09537325.2019.1648788",
language = "English",
journal = "Technology analysis & strategic management",
issn = "0953-7325",
publisher = "Routledge",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Technology legitimation in the public discourse

T2 - applying the pillars of legitimacy on GM food

AU - Jansma, Sikke R.

AU - Gosselt, Jordy F.

AU - Kuipers, Kimberly

AU - de Jong, Menno D.T.

N1 - Taylor & Francis deal

PY - 2019/8/2

Y1 - 2019/8/2

N2 - The public sphere, reflected by the public discourse, is an important domain for the legitimation of technology. In the institutional literature, four pillars of legitimacy are distinguished: normative, cognitive, regulative, and pragmatic. The aim of this study was to investigate to what extent these pillars can be used as a framework for analysing the legitimation of technological innovations in the public discourse. We conducted a qualitative media analysis of the case of GM food in the Netherlands, analysing 287 articles from nine Dutch newspapers in the period of 1996–2016. The results show that the pillars provide insight into legitimacy in a multi-dimensional way and serve as a structure for the dynamics of legitimation processes. Regarding GM food, the public debate was pre-dominantly negative, with a strong focus on the normative pillar. Emotional rhetoric exceeded knowledge and understanding (cognitive pillar) of GM food. The regulative and pragmatic pillars were hardly addressed.

AB - The public sphere, reflected by the public discourse, is an important domain for the legitimation of technology. In the institutional literature, four pillars of legitimacy are distinguished: normative, cognitive, regulative, and pragmatic. The aim of this study was to investigate to what extent these pillars can be used as a framework for analysing the legitimation of technological innovations in the public discourse. We conducted a qualitative media analysis of the case of GM food in the Netherlands, analysing 287 articles from nine Dutch newspapers in the period of 1996–2016. The results show that the pillars provide insight into legitimacy in a multi-dimensional way and serve as a structure for the dynamics of legitimation processes. Regarding GM food, the public debate was pre-dominantly negative, with a strong focus on the normative pillar. Emotional rhetoric exceeded knowledge and understanding (cognitive pillar) of GM food. The regulative and pragmatic pillars were hardly addressed.

KW - UT-Hybrid-D

KW - Legitimacy

KW - media analysis

KW - public discourse

KW - GM food

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85070335472&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1080/09537325.2019.1648788

DO - 10.1080/09537325.2019.1648788

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85070335472

JO - Technology analysis & strategic management

JF - Technology analysis & strategic management

SN - 0953-7325

ER -