Robust governance for the long term and the heat of the moment

Robust governance for the long term and the heat of the moment

Public Administration

 Temporal strategies for coping with dual crises

Today the world is confronted with dual crises: creeping and acute threats unfolding at the same time—for example, the manifestation of extreme weather events such as drought and flooding and the creeping crisis of climate change. To cope with dual crises, this article develops a novel temporal perspective that offers policy actors a repertoire of interrelated strategies for enhancing the robustness of institutional efforts. The repertoire consists of five temporal strategies that policy actors can use to navigate the twin challenges of immediate and latent threats in conjunction: strategic coupling of short-term shocks and creeping crises, crafting time horizons, molding the pace of public problem-solving, mobilizing anticipatory capacity through futuring techniques, and adaptive iteration of policy decisions. We illustrate the practical application of these strategies in an exploratory case study of adaptive water management in the Netherlands.

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