Learning or evaluating? Towards a negotiation-of-meaning approach to learning in transition governance

PJ Beers, JA Turner, K Rijswijk, T Williams, T Barnard, S Beechener

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Welfare state transitions require not only experimentation and social learning to explore the potential of innovations for sustainable development but also monitoring to draw vital lessons from experiments for application now and in the future. However, current approaches to learning are mostly concerned with what happens within the boundaries of innovation experiments, whereas transitions in the making feature important boundary-crossing processes between initiatives and their environment. In this paper, we explore the learning approach of negotiation of meaning as a basis for transition monitoring in a New Zealand programme for agricultural innovation called ‘Primary Innovation’. We used a mix of specifically crafted value add documents and workshops to foster learning processes between innovation projects and incumbents. Results suggest that a negotiation-of-meaning perspective offers an important complement to our understanding of learning processes in transition contexts and how to facilitate them.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-239
JournalTechnological Forecasting and Social Change
Early online date19 Sept 2018
Publication statusPrint publication - Aug 2019


  • Learning
  • Monitoring
  • Negotiation of meaning
  • Strategic niche management
  • Transition management
  • Transitions


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