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Complexity and the Art of Public PolicySolving Society's Problems from the Bottom Up$
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David Colander and Roland Kupers

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691169132

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691169132.001.0001

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The Complexity Policy Frame

The Complexity Policy Frame

(p.44) Chapter 4 The Complexity Policy Frame
Complexity and the Art of Public Policy

David Colander

Roland Kupers

Princeton University Press

This chapter spells out the complexity policy frame in more detail. It begins with a brief introduction to complexity science, since it is the basis for the policy frame itself. It then outlines the complexity policy frame that sees the entire social system as a complex evolving system, and spells out a role for government within that frame. While this new frame agrees that the system cannot be controlled, it does accept that government policy is crucial for the system to work and sees government as playing a role in the system’s evolution. One aspect of policy involves attempting to make that role better—people, through government, and in partnership with private institutions, help influence the evolution of the economy in ways that they believe will be positive. This is a much more difficult policy role for government than any envisioned by the standard policy model, which sees government as outside of the system correcting for market failures.

Keywords:   complexity science, complexity frame, government policy, policymaking

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