Government spending on the environment has long been explained as a reaction to ecological deterioration. Little is known about the role of political institutions and players in environmental funding decisions, which is surprising given the rapid institutionalization of environmental bureaucracies since the late 1970s. Grounded in information processing theories and employing data from Hong Kong, this research examines bureaucratic strategies for influencing environmental legislation. We find three salient bureaucratic choices in budget debates: framing environmental issues broadly to include health and technological implications; formulating rationales that emphasize (potential) performance of proposed projects; and presenting narratives of the consequences of funding decisions. These strategies are part of an evolving political narrative that reflects a broader political debate on environmental institutionalization, and the need for effective strategies to improve environmental funding in governments. Our findings contribute to understanding the bureaucratic politics of environmental funding legislation. Copyright © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
CitationXu, J., Wang, X., & Xiao, H. (2020). How environmental bureaucrats influence funding legislation: An information processing perspective. Environmental Politics. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/09644016.2020.1742551
- Environmental spending
- Bureaucratic strategies
- Information processing
- Discourse analysis