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How Context Matters: Linking Environmental Policy to People and Place

George Honadle
How Context Matters: Linking Environmental Policy to People and Place
ISBN: 978-1-56549-105-2
ISBN: 978-1-56549-104-5
2000/222 pages/LC: 99-44133
A Kumarian Press Book

"This book belongs in the classroom, as well as on the shelves of environment and development decisionmakers. It employs lively metaphors and neologisms, offering a practical setting in which to explore the bromides of a curriculum."—John D. Montgomery, Harvard University

"How Context Matters constructs a new framework—context embeddedness—through which to understand and articulate the links between the environment, social institutions, and development policy."—Vernon W. Ruttan, University of Minnesota

"In contrast to the monolithic world views of many environment and development institutions, Honadle's How Context Matters is a well-argued, well-synthesized, multifaceted, and refreshing alternative. Based largely on the authors 30+ years of professional experience in developing nations, this work is vastly important and will be widely read and cited."—Joel T. Heinen, Florida International University


Presenting a unique method of looking at environmental policy formulation and implementation, George Honadle clarifies those elements of context that affect how policies work and outlines policymaking approaches that incorporate the important linkages among public policies, human behavior, and natural settings.


George Honadle is an independent development consultant specializing in environmental policy and institutional strengthening.


  • Introduction: Beyond Homogenous Thinking.
  • Different Demands: Intended Consequences of Natural Resource Policies.
  • Twisting Pathways: Alternative Implementation Strategies.
  • A Context Map: Variables Intervening Between Policies and Consequences.
  • Interpreting the Past: Two Tests of the Context Perspective.
  • Toward Designer Policy Packages: Considerations When Using the Context Map.
  • Conclusion: Implications of the Context Paradigm.