The promises and pitfalls of polysemic ideas: 'One Health' and antimicrobial resistance policy in Australia and the UK
AuthorHannah, A; Baekkeskov, E
Source TitlePolicy Sciences: an international journal devoted to the improvement of policy making
AffiliationSchool of Social and Political Sciences
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsHannah, A. & Baekkeskov, E. (2020). The promises and pitfalls of polysemic ideas: 'One Health' and antimicrobial resistance policy in Australia and the UK. POLICY SCIENCES, 53 (3), pp.437-452. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11077-020-09390-3.
Access StatusAccess this item via the Open Access location
Open Access URLhttps://europepmc.org/articles/PMC7256178?pdf=render
Recent scholarship posits that ambiguous (‘polysemic’) ideas are efective for coalition building between diverse stakeholders: their capacity to be interpreted diferently attracts diferent interests. Hence, in search of political solutions to ‘wicked’ and similarly complex problems, deploying polysemic ideas would be critical to efective policy-making. This paper scopes the policy-making potential of polysemic ideas by examining the impact of an ambiguous concept known as ‘One Health’ on responses to antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in Australia and the UK. It ofers two primary arguments. Firstly, polysemic ideas can help mobilise broad attention to complex problems: since One Health became associated with AMR, political and administrative attention has grown more intense and coordinated than previously. Secondly, however, a polysemic idea alone may be insufcient to generate efective action: the contrast between Australian and UK AMR policies illustrates that polysemic ideas do not suspend interests, institutions, or ideas that can be readily deployed.
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