In this paper we analyse the role of knowledge management in the policy process about the Development Plan 2010 for the Scheldt Estuary (a Dutch-Flemish river basin). The conflicts of interests around this package of measures are sharp. Therefore, knowledge is often strategically used in order to defend stakeholders’ own preferences. The project organisation (ProSes) that prepares the Development Plan organised a joint fact-finding process in order to reach ‘shared knowledge’. In this paper we evaluate this process. Especially the relations between the joint fact-finding process and the traditional democratic decision-making process and the separate organisations, which form part of the policy network, seem to be problematic. We formulate some conclusions about the possibilities and limitations of knowledge management within complex policy processes.

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Department of Public Administration

van Buuren, A., Edelenbos, J., & Klijn, E.-H. (2007). Managing knowledge in policy networks. Organising joint fact-finding in the Scheldt Estuary.. Retrieved from