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Political Opportunity Structures and Political Protest: Anti-Nuclear Movements in Four Democracies

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 January 2009


Since the 1960s, successive protest movements have challenged public policies, established modes of political participation and socio-economic institutions in advanced industrial democracies. Social scientists have responded by conducting case studies of such movements. Comparative analyses, particularly cross-national comparisons of social movements, however, remain rare, although opportunities abound to observe movements with similar objectives or forms of mobilization in diverse settings.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1986

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1 The non-theoretical literature includes several useful handbooks, written by anti-nuclear activists, about the development of nuclear power conflicts in a number of countries, as well as several descriptively rich comparative analyses written by academic observers. Representative handbooks include: Projektbereich Ökologie der Vereinigten deutschen Studentenschaft, Bochum, Atomenergie International: Atomprogramme und Wilderstand in 28 Ländern (Bochum: Druckladen, 1978)Google Scholar; Gyorgy, Anna and friends, No Nukes: Everyone's Guide to Nuclear Power (Boston: South End Press, 1979)Google Scholar; and Mez, Lutz, ed., Der Atomkonflikt (West Berlin: Olle und Wolters, 1979)Google Scholar. Representative academic analyses include: John Surrey and Huggett, Charlotte, ‘Opposition to Nuclear Power: A Review of International Experience’, Energy Policy, IV (1976), 286307Google Scholar; Nelkin, Dorothy and Pollak, Michael, ‘The Politics of Participation and the Nuclear Debate in Sweden, the Netherlands, and Austria’, Public Policy, XXV (1977), 333–57Google Scholar; also ‘The Political Parties and the Nuclear Energy Debate in France and Germany’, Comparative Politics, XII (1980), 127–41Google Scholar; and also The Atom Besieged: Extraparliamentary Dissent in France and Germany (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1981)Google Scholar; and Falk, Jim, Global Fission: The Battle Over Nuclear Power (Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1982).Google Scholar

2 Societal impacts of social movements are a concern of the following recent literature: Gamson, William, The Strategy of Social Protest (Homewood, IL: Dorsey, 1975)Google Scholar; Marx, Gary and Wood, James, ‘Strands of Theory and Research in Collective Behavior’, Annual Review of Sociology, I (1975). 363428CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Piven, Frances Fox and Cloward, Richard, Poor People's Movements: Why They Succeed, How They Fail (New York: Pantheon, 1979)Google Scholar; Gurr, Ted Robert, ‘On the Outcomes of Violent Conflict’, in Gurr, Ted Robert, ed., Handbook of Political Conflict (New York: Free Press, 1980), pp. 238–94Google Scholar; McAdam, Doug, Political Process and the Development of Black Insurgency, 1930 1970 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982)Google Scholar; and Tarrow, Sidney, Social Movements: Resource Mobilization and Reform During Cycles of Protest: A Bibliographic and Critical Essay, Western Societies Program, Occasional Paper No. 15, Center for International Studies (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University, 1982).Google Scholar

3 Key contributions to this perspective include: Touraine, Alain, The Self-Production of Society (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1977)Google Scholar, Chap. 6; Touraine, Alain, The Voice and the Eye (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1981)Google Scholar; Touraine, Alain, Hegedus, Zsuza, Dubet, François and Wieviorka, Michel, La Prophétie Anti-Nucléaire (Paris: Edition du Seuil, 1980)Google Scholar; Melucci, Alberto, ‘The New Social Movements: A Theoretical Approach’, Social Science Information, XIX (1980), 199226CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Habermas, Jürgen, Theorie des kommunikativen Handelns, Volumes 1 and 2 (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1981)Google Scholar; Eder, Klaus, ‘A New Social Movement?’, Telos, 52 (1982), 520CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and Offe, Claus, ‘New Social Movements as a Meta-Political Challenge’ (unpublished paper, Universität Bielefeld, 06 1983).Google Scholar A critical review of the literature is found in Cohen, Jean, ‘Between Crisis Management and Social Movements: The Place of Institutional Reform’, Telos, LII (1982), 2140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

4 This perspective is labelled as ‘Durkheimian’ in Tilly, Charles, From Mobilization to Revolution (Reading. MA: Addison-Wesley, 1978).Google Scholar It has been adopted and refined by authors as diverse as the structural-functionalist Neil Smelser, in Theory of Collective Behavior (New York: Free Press, 1962)Google Scholar and the behavioralist Gurr, Ted Robert in Why Men Rebel (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1970).Google Scholar Critical assessments of the relative deprivation perspective are found in Useem, Michael, Protest Movements in America (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1975)Google Scholar and Jenkins, J. Craig, ‘Sociopolitical Movements’, in Long, Samuel R., ed., The Handbook of Political Behavior, Vol. 4 (New York: Plenum Press, 1981).Google Scholar

5 Early critics of the social strain and relative deprivation theories rejected their validity out of hand, but some contemporary critics accept the intensification of grievances as one of several determinants of social movement mobilization. For example, see Walsh, E. J., ‘Resource Mobilization and Citizen Protest in Communities Around Three Mile Island’, Social Problems, XXIX (1981). 121CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Kerbo, Harold R., ‘Movements of “Crisis” and Movements of “Affluence”: A Critique of Deprivation and Resource Mobilization Theories’, Journal of Conflict Resolution, XXVI (1982), 645–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and Webb, Keith et al. , ‘Etiology and Outcomes of Protest: New European Perspectives’, American Behavioral Scientist, XXVI (1983), 311–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

6 Key contributions to the resource mobilization perspective are Obserschall, Anthony, Social Conflict and Social Movements (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1973)Google Scholar; Gamson, William, The Strategy of Social Protest (Homewood, IL: Dorsey, 1975)Google Scholar; and McCarthy, John D. and Zald, Mayer, ‘Resource Mobilization and Social Movements: A Partial Theory’, American Journal of Sociology, LXXXII (1977), 1212–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

7 McCarthy, and Zald, , ‘Resource Mobilization and Social Movements’, p. 1236Google Scholar, for instance simply state that they have assumed the ‘modern American context’ for their theory. But the institutional context is, as Piven, and Cloward, , pp. 1537Google Scholar, point out, an important determinant of movement mobilization that may vary. A greater emphasis on external political opportunity structures is found in some of the recent social movement research. See McAdam, , Political Process and the Development of Black InsurgencyGoogle Scholar, Tarrow, , Social MovementsGoogle Scholar; and Tilly, , From Mobilization to Revolution, Chap. 4.Google Scholar

8 If the paper focused on the explanation of early nuclear power conflicts, a more disaggregate level of analysis would have been in order: site-specific variables, such as the absence or presence of other industrial polluters, including nuclear ones, at a prospective plant site; patterns of rural settlement; fiscal side-payments to communities willing to host nuclear facilities; and the secretiveness of decision-making among local political and economic elites have been found to be reliable predictors of protest in numerous case studies. For France, see Anger, Didier, Cronique d'une lutte: le combat anti-nucléaire à Flamanville et dans La Hague (without location: Jean-Claude Simoën, 1977)Google Scholar; Garraud, Phillipe, ‘Politique électro-nucléaire et mobilisation: la tentative de constitution d'enjeu’, Revue française de science politique, XXIX (1979), 448–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Jund, Thierry, Le Nucléaire contre l'Alsace (Paris: Syros, 1977)Google Scholar; Lucas, N. J. D., Energy in France: Planning, Politics and Policy (London: Europa Publications, 1979), pp. 188212Google Scholar; and Nicolon, Alexandre, ‘Analyse d'une opposition à un site nucléaire’, pp. 79159Google Scholar in Fagnani, Francis and Nicolon, Alexandre, Nucléopolis: materiaux pour l'analyse d'une société nucléaire (Grenoble: Presses Universitaires de Grenoble, 1979).Google Scholar For Sweden, see Daleus, Lennart, ‘A Moratorium in Name Only’, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist, XXXI (1975), 2733.CrossRefGoogle Scholar For tne United States see Caldwell, Lynton, Hayes, Lynton, and MacWhirter, Isabel, Citizens and the Environment: Case Studies in Popular Action (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1976)Google Scholar, Chaps. 3, 6, 7 and 8; Sesto, Steven del, Science, Politics and Controversy: Civilian Nuclear Power in the United States, 1947–1974 (Boulder, CO: Westview, 1979)Google Scholar, Chap. 6; Ebbin, Stephen and Kasper, Raphael, Citizen Groups and the Nuclear Power Controversy: Uses of Scientific and Technical Information (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1974)Google Scholar; Gyorgy, et al. , No NukesGoogle Scholar; Kasperson, Robert E. et al. , ‘Public Opposition to Nuclear Energy: Retrospect and Prospect’, Science, Technology and Human Values, V (1980), 1123CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and Nelkin, Dorothy, Nuclear Power and Its Critics: The Cayuga Lake Controversy (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1971)Google Scholar. For West Germany, see Battelle Institut, Bürgerinitiativen im Bereich von Kernkraftwerken (Bonn: Bundesministerium für Forschung und Technologie, 1975)Google Scholar; Kitschelt, Herbert, Kernenergiepolitik: Arena eines gesellschaftlichen Konflikts (Frankfurt: Campus, 1980)Google Scholar, Chaps. 5.2 and 5.4; Rucht, Dieter, Von Whyl nach Gorleben: Bürger gegen Atomprogramm und nukleare Entsorgung (Munich: Beck, 1980)Google Scholar; and Schritt, Joachim, Bauern gegen Atomanlagen (Offenbach: Verlag 2000, 1977).Google Scholar

9 Reliable quantitative data about the social background of anti-nuclear activists are hard to come by. But the case studies referred to in fn. 4 consistently identify these three groups of activists.

10 The alliances of pro-nuclear interests were very similar in all four countries during the early stages of the nuclear power debate. However, the reasons why these clusters of industrial and administrative interests are the logical outcome of nuclear technology development in the countries compared here are discussed in Kitschelt, Herbert, ‘Structures and Sequences of Nuclear Energy Policy-Making: Suggestions for a Comparative Perspective’, Political Power and Social Theory, III (1982), 271308.Google Scholar

11 The concept of political opportunity structure is used here in a broader sense than that conveyed by ‘state structure’, a concept that has been used, and criticized, in recent discussions in the field of comparative public policy. See Zysman, John, Governments, Markets and Growth (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1983), pp. 291300 and 347–9Google Scholar. Opportunity structure encompasses the concept of ‘dominant policy style’. The latter is developed for a number of countries in Richardson, Jeremy, ed., Policy Styles in Western Europe (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1982)Google Scholar. A recent analysis in this vein of labour movements is found in Lange, Peter, Ross, George and Vannizelli, Maurizio, Unions, Change and Crisis: French and Italian Union Strategy and the Political Economy, 1945–1980 (London: Allen & Unwin, 1982).Google Scholar

12 The concepts of movement cycles and reform cycles are developed in Tarrow, , Social Movements, pp. 3546.Google Scholar

13 Structures are those processes in a system that change at a rate so slow as to be fixed for the study of events that transpire over a short period of time. See Deutsch, Karl, ‘The Crisis of the State’, Government and Opposition, XVI (1981), 331–41, at p. 332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

14 The distinction drawn between open and closed opportunity structures is used in Eisinger, Peter K., ‘The Conditions of Protest Behavior in American Cities’, American Political Science Review, LXVII (1973), 1128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

15 This term is used in May, Judith and Wildavsky, Aaron, eds, The Policy Cycle (Beverly Hills, CA: Sage, 1978)Google Scholar to describe public policy processes in terms of steps and stages.

16 This point is frequently stressed in implementation research. See Bardach, Eugene, The Implementation Game (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1977).Google Scholar

17 This variable permits only a restricted, though important, scope of generalization across policy areas. While it is important as a determinant of most economic and social policies, there are obviously other policy areas where it does not come into play as a determinant of policy formation.

18 The divergent features of political regimes found among advanced industrial democracies can be traced back to the circumstances surrounding their state-building, their location in the world economy, the timing and speed of their industrialization, and the formation of class and group coalitions promoting specific regime forms. For the purposes of this article, however, the varying outcomes of political development in the four countries are taken as givens.

19 Useful analyses of the French political system are found in Cerny, Philip G. and Schain, Martin A., eds, French Politics and Public Policy (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1980)Google Scholar; Andrews, William and Hoffman, Stanley, eds, The Fifth Republic at Twenty (Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1981)Google Scholar; Cohen, Stephen and Gourevitch, Peter, eds., France in a Troubled World Economy (London: Butterworth Scientific, 1982)Google Scholar; and Ashford, Douglas, Policy and Politics in France (Philadelphia, PA: Temple University Press, 1982).Google Scholar

20 Compare, for the assimilation of Swedish movements in the late 1960s, Ruin, Olof, ‘Participatory Democracy and Corporatism: The Case of Sweden’, Scandanavian Political Studies, IX (1974), 171–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar Early socio-economic reforms and a better representation of women in politics have even pre-empted a strong women's movement in Sweden. Compare: Edwards, Maud, ‘Sweden’, in Lovenduski, Joni and Hills, Jill, eds. The Politics of the Second Electorate: Women and Public Participation (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul), pp. 208–27Google Scholar; Scott, Hilda, Sweden's ‘Right to Be Human’: Sex Role Equality: The Goal and the Reality (Avondale, NY: M. E. Sharpe, 1982).Google Scholar

21 For Sweden, see Elder, Neil, Government in Sweden: The Executive at Work (Oxford: Pergamon, 1970)Google Scholar; Hancock, M. Donald, Sweden: The Politics of Postindustrial Change (Hinsdale, IL: The Dryden Press, 1972)Google Scholar; and Anton, Thomas J., Administered Politics: Elite Political Culture in Sweden (Boston: Nijhoff, 1980)CrossRefGoogle Scholar. Several works note a marked decline in Sweden's capacity to build consensus and implement public policy. As similar trends also have been observed in other countries, the distance between the predominant Swedish ‘policy style’ and other regimes, nevertheless, may not have disappeared. See Gustafsson, Gunnel and Richardson, Jeremy, ‘Concepts of Rationality and the Policy Process’, European Journal of Political Research, VII (1979), 415–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Ruin, Olof, ‘Sweden in the 1970s: Policy-making Becomes More Difficult’, in Richardson, ed., Policy Styles in Western Europe, pp. 141–67Google Scholar; and Elder, Neil, Thomas, Alastair H. and Arter, David, The Consensual Democracies? (Oxford: Martin Robertson, 1982).Google Scholar

22 For the American political system, see Burnham, Walter Dean, Critical Elections and the Mainsprings of American Politics (New York: Norton, 1971)Google Scholar; Seidman, Harold, Politics, Position and Power: The Dynamics of Federal Organization, 2nd edn (New York: Oxford University Press, 1975)Google Scholar; King, Anthony, ed., The New American Political System (Washington, DC: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, 1978)Google Scholar; and Sundquist, James, The Decline and Resurgence of Congress (Washington, DC: Brookings, 1981).Google Scholar

23 Useful analyses of policy-making in West Germany are found in Mayntz, Renate and Scharpf, Fritz, Policy-Making in the German Federal Bureaucracy (New York: Elsevier, 1975)Google Scholar; Conradt, David, The German Polity, 2nd edn (New York: Longman, 1982)Google Scholar; Dyson, Kenneth, ‘West Germany: The Search for a Rationalist Consensus’Google Scholar, in Richardson, , ed., Policy Styles in Western Europe, pp. 1646.Google Scholar

24 Gamson, , The Strategy of Protest, Chap. 3Google Scholar, introduced the important distinction between procedural and substantive impacts or ‘gains’ of movements, but omitted structural impacts on the political regimes themselves.

25 In addition to those listed in fn. 2, detailed analyses of the nuclear power conflict in the United States are found in: Nelkin, Dorothy and Fallows, Susan, ‘The Evolution of the Nuclear Debate: The Role of Public Participation’, Annual Review of Energy, III (1978), 275312CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and Price, Jerome, The Anti-nuclear Movement (Boston: Twayne Publishers, 1982).Google Scholar

26 For the Swedish nuclear controversy, see Daleus, , ‘A Moratorium in Name Only’Google Scholar; Nelkin, and Pollak, , ‘The Politics of Participation’Google Scholar; Abrahamson, Dean, ‘Governments Fall as Consensus Gives Way to Debate’, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist, XXXV (1979), 30–7Google Scholar; Westmann, Ann-Marie, ‘Schweden, Wohfahrtsstaat am Scheideweg’Google Scholar, in Mez, , Der Atomkonflikt, pp. 229–40Google Scholar; and Zetterberg, Hans, The Swedish Public and Nuclear Energy: The Referendum of 1980 (Tokyo: United Nations University, 1980).Google Scholar

27 The role of political parties in West German and French nuclear power controversies is analysed in Nicolon, Alexandre and Carrieu, Marie-Josephe, ‘Les parties face au nucléaire et la contestation’Google Scholar, in Fagnani, and Nicolson, , Nucléopolis, pp. 79159Google Scholar; Nelkin, and Pollak, , ‘The Political Parties and the Nuclear Energy Debate in France and Germany’Google Scholar; and Kitschelt, , Kernenergiepolitik, Chap. 5.5.Google Scholar

28 For the United States, see Ebbin, and Kasper, , Citizen Groups and the Nuclear Power ControversyGoogle Scholar; and Rolph, Elizabeth S., Nuclear Power and the Public Safety: A Study in Regulation (Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1979)Google Scholar. For West Germany, see Kitschelt, , Kernenergiepolitik, Chap. 4Google Scholar. Licensing procedures in the United States, West Germany, France and Sweden are compared in Hoffmann, Lutz et al. , Faktoren der Standortwahl für Kernkraftwerke in ausgewählten Industriestaaten (Bonn: Bundesministerium für Raumordnung, 1978).Google Scholar

29 The role of litigation in West German and American anti-nuclear activities is discussed in Cook, Constance Ewing, Nuclear Power and Legal Advocacy: The Environmentalists and the Courts (Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1980)Google Scholar; Kitschelt, , Kernenergiepolitik, Chap. 5.4Google Scholar; Nelkin, and Pollack, , The Atom Besieged, Chap. 11.Google Scholar

30 The effectiveness of litigation and the importance of the courts in the anti-nuclear movement's strategy has sometimes been overestimated, e.g., by Nelkin, and Pollack, , The Atom BesiegedGoogle Scholar. There is not a single instance in either country where appeals courts have permanently revoked nuclear construction or operation licences. A discussion of the limits of the litigation strategy and the disillusionment it brings appears in Kitschelt, Herbert, ‘Justizapparate als Konfliktlösungsinstanz?Demokratie und Recht, VII (01 1979), 322Google Scholar; and in McSpadden-Wenner, Lettie, ‘Energy Environmental Trade-Offs in the Courts: Nuclear and Fossil Fuels’, Axelrod, Regina, ed., Environment, Energy, Public Policy (Lexington, MA: D. C. Heath, 1981), pp. 81109.Google Scholar

31 The French licensing procedure is discussed in Colson, Jean-Marie, Le Nucléaire sans les Français: Qui decide? Qui profite? (Paris: Maspero, 1977), pp. 101ff.Google Scholar

32 These correlations between political structures and protest activity also appear in earlier movements from which anti-nuclear groups recruited some of their participants. Student movements in the late 1960s, for instance, were more militant and embittered in West Germany and France than in Sweden or in the United States.

33 The Seabrook controversy is discussed in Barkan, Steven, ‘Strategic, Tactical and Organizational Dilemmas of the Protest Movement Against Nuclear Energy’, Social Problems, XXVII (1979), 1937CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and in Wasserman, Harvey, Energy War: Reports from the Front (New York: Lawrence Hill, 1979).Google Scholar

34 Survey questions have been manipulated so as to create a virtual ‘politics of nuclear polling’, with advocates and opponents of nuclear power using the surveys most favourable to their own position. This is discussed in Renn, Otwin, Kernenergie aus der Sicht der Bevölkerung (Jülich: Kernforschungsanlage Jülich, 1977), pp. 47–9.Google Scholar

35 The concept of the ‘issue attention cycle’ for social movements is developed in Downs, Anthony, ‘Up and Down with Ecology: The “Issue Attention Cycle”’, Public Interest, XXVIII (1972), 3850.Google Scholar

36 For opinion surveys about nuclear energy issues, see Duménil, Gerard, ‘Energie nucléaire et opinion publique’, pp. 317–74Google Scholar in Fagnani, and Nicolon, , Nucléopolis (France)Google Scholar; Farah, Barbara et al. , Public Opinion About Energy: A Literature Review (Golden, CO: Solar Energy Research Institute, 1979) (United States)Google Scholar; Renn, , Kernenergie aus der Sicht der BevölkerungGoogle Scholar and Wahrnehmung und Akzeptanz technischer Risiken (Jülich: Kernforschungslage Jülich, 1981) (Germany)Google Scholar; and Zetterberg, Hans, The Swedish Public and Nuclear Energy (Sweden).Google Scholar

37 It has also been argued that weakness of a nation's energy sector, above all the absence of strong oil companies, explains why governments protect nuclear and other energy policies more from movement challenges than do countries with strong, indigenous energy industries. For this argument, see Gourevitch, Peter, ‘The Second Image Reversed: The International Sources of Domestic Polities’, International Organization, XXXII (1978), 881911, esp. p. 906CrossRefGoogle Scholar. At first blush, this model seems to explain the differences between France and the United States. The weak French energy sector requires firm government support, whereas the United States can afford a more pluralist style because its energy sector is strong and can fight for itself. The model fails to explain, however, why West Germany and Sweden, each with comparatively weak energy industries, were unable to imitate the French strategy and, instead, retreated, each in its own particular way, from an all-out, long-term commitment to nuclear power.

38 The new Socialist government allowed consultative local referendums on nuclear power projects. But this provision was far less sweeping than it sounds, for referendums may be overruled by decisions of regional political bodies, and the reform was accompanied by government and electric utility threats of economic hardship for uncooperative regions. The licensing reform by the Socialist government is described in Rappin, M., ‘Dezentralisierung des französischen Genehmigungverfahrens’, Atomwirischaft-Atomtechnik, XXVII (1982), 3941.Google Scholar

39 For the litigation initiated by French anti-nuclear activists, see Colson, , Le Nucléaire sans les Français, pp. 139–50Google Scholar, and Nelkin, and Pollak, , The Atom Besieged, Chap. 11.Google Scholar

40 The political dynamics of this commission are analysed in Kitschelt, Herbert, ‘Der Zwischenbericht der Enquete-Kommission “Zukunftige Kernenergiepolitik”: Stagnation oder Innovation in der politischen Ökonomie des westdeutschen Energiesektors?Jarhbuch Technik und Gesellschaft, I (1982), 165–91.Google Scholar

41 There are several overviews of American nuclear energy policy that place it in the more comprehensive setting of American energy policy: Bupp, Irwin C. and Derian, Jean-Claude, Light Water: How the Nuclear Dream Dissolved (New York: Basic Books, 1978), Chaps. 8 and 10Google Scholar; Rosenbaum, Walter, Energy, Politics and Public Policy (Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly Press, 1981)Google Scholar; Chubb, John, Interest Groups and the Bureaucracy: The Politics of Energy (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1983), Chaps. 4 and 6.Google Scholar

42 Compare Nelkin, and Pollak, , ‘The Politics of Participation’.Google Scholar

43 These financial difficulties are discussed in Cohen, Stephen, ‘Informed Bewilderment: French Economic Strategy and the Crisis’Google Scholar, in Cohen, and Gourevitch, , France in a Troubled World Economy, pp. 2148Google Scholar; and in Kitschelt, Herbert, Politik und Energie: Energie-Technologiepolitiken in den USA, der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Frankreich und Schweden (Frankfurt: Campus Verlag, 1983), pp. 249–51.Google Scholar

44 This process was accompanied by increasing outlays for nuclear safety research that led to further regulatory requirements and delays of nuclear power plants. See Weingast, Barry, ‘Congress, Regulation and the Decline of Nuclear Power’, Public Policy, XXVIII (1980), 231–55.Google Scholar

45 These data would be even more striking if only plants originally scheduled for completion between 1976 and 1980 had been included. By the 1980s, after the controversy's peak, plants were delayed an average of 73·7 months in the United States, 42·2 months in the Federal Republic, 15·9 months in France, and 17·2 months in Sweden. By 1984, some time after the peak of the nuclear controversy, delays for this group of power plants had increased still further: 86 months in the United States, 56 in West Germany, 26 in Sweden, and 16 in France. Data are calculated according to sources and procedures described under Table 6.

46 For a more detailed analysis of energy conservation policies, compare: International Energy Agency, Energy Conservation: The Role of Demand Management in the 1980s (Paris: OECD, 1981)Google Scholar, and Kitschelt, , Politik und Energie, Chap. 4.1.Google Scholar

47 See Lucas, , Energy in France, pp. 152–6.Google Scholar

48 An instructive analysis of the budget decisions for solar energy by the US Congress is provided by Lambright, W. Henry and Teich, Albert, ‘Policy Innovation in Federal Research and Development: The Case of Energy Research and Development’, Public Administration Review, IXL (1979), 140–7CrossRefGoogle Scholar. A detailed comparative analysis of the formation and implementation of energy technology policies can be found in Kitscheit, , Politik und Energie, Chap. 6.Google Scholar

49 Large German coal deposits do not improve this picture dramatically. Because mining and burning coal have deleterious environmental and economic consequences, Germany has been hesitant to exploit this resource at an accelerated pace.

50 An assessment of the world energy situation after the second oil crisis of 1978–80 is found in Yergin, Daniel and Hillenbrand, Martin, eds, Global Insecurity: A Strategy for Energy and Economic Renewal (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1982).Google Scholar

51 For discussions of ecological parties, see Vadrot, Claude-Marie, L'Écologie: histoire d'une subversion (Paris: Syros, 1978)Google Scholar; Garraud, , ‘Politique electro-nucléaire et mobilisation’Google Scholar; Roth, Roland, ed., Parlamentarisches Ritual und politische Alternativen (Frankfurt: Campus Verlag, 1980)Google Scholar; Mettke, Jörg, ed., Die Grünen: Regierungspartner von morgen (Reinbek: Rowohlt, 1982)Google Scholar; Müller-Rommel, Ferdinand, ‘“Parteinen neuen Typs” in Westeuropa: eine vergleichende Analyse’, Zeilschrift für Parlamentsfragen, XIII (1982), 369–90Google Scholar; and Mewes, Horst, ‘The West German Green Party’. New German Critique, XXVIII (1983), 5183.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

52 The new parties thus destabilize the formation of cleavages that have been institutionalized in West European party systems throughout most of this century. Compare Lipset, Seymour Martin and Rokkan, Stein, eds. Party Systems and Voter Alignments (New York: Free Press, 1967).Google Scholar

53 This argument is elaborated in the theories referred to in fn. 3.

54 Thus, ecological parties in countries with weak nuclear conflicts or with opportunity structures not conducive to the formation of new parties will benefit in the future from a demonstration effect provided by the successful ecological parties, especially the West German party. A more exhaustive comparative analysis of ecological parties in different countries would require a detailed examination of the socioeconomic development, the political culture and the system of party competition in each instance.

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