Dryzek, John S. 1953-
Dryzek, John S. 1953-
Born June 23, 1953, in Maids Moreton, England; married; children: two. Education: University of Lancaster, B.A. (with honors), 1974; University of Strathclyde, M.Sc., 1976; University of Maryland, Ph.D. 1980.
Political scientist, writer, and educator. Glasgow College of Technology, Glasgow, Scotland, lecturer, 1977; Ohio State University, Columbus, Department of Political Science, assistant professor, 1980-86; University of Oregon, Eugene, assistant professor, 1986-88, associate professor, 1988-91, professor 1991-95; University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia, Department of Political Science, professor, 1995-2000; Australian National University, Canberra, Social and Political Theory Program, Research School of Social Sciences, professor, 2001—. Has also held visiting and administrative appointments at numerous universities.
David and Elaine Spitz Prize, Conference for the Study of Political Thought, 1996, for Democracy in Capitalist Times: Ideals, Limits, and Struggles; Fellow, Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia, 1997; Distinguished Senior Academic Scholar, University of Melbourne, 1998-2000.
Conflict and Choice in Resource Management: The Case of Alaska, Westview Press (Boulder, CO) 1983.
(With Davis B. Bobrow) Policy Analysis by Design, University of Pittsburgh Press (Pittsburgh, PA), 1987.
Rational Ecology: Environment and Political Economy, B. Blackwell (New York, NY), 1987.
(Editor, with James Farr and Stephen T. Leonard) Political Science in History: Research Programs and Political Traditions, Cambridge University Press (New York, NY), 1995.
Democracy in Capitalist Times: Ideals, Limits, and Struggles, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 1996.
The Politics of the Earth: Environmental Discourses, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 1997, 2nd edition, Oxford University Press, (New York, NY), 2005.
(Editor, with David Schlosberg) Debating the Earth: The Environmental Politics Reader, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 1998, 2nd edition, Oxford University Press, (New York, NY), 2005.
Deliberative Democracy and Beyond: Liberals, Critics, Contestations, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 2000.
(With Leslie Holmes) Post-Communist Democratization: Political Discourses across Thirteen Countries, Cambridge University Press (New York, NY), 2002.
(With others) Green States and Social Movements: Environmentalism in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and Norway, Oxford University Press (New York, NY), 2003.
(Editor, with Bonnie Honig and Anne Phillips) The Oxford Handbook of Political Theory, Oxford University Press (Oxford, England), 2006.
Deliberative Global Politics: Discourse and Democracy in a Divided World, Polity Press (Oxford, England), 2006.
Author's books have been translated into several languages. Contributor to books, including A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Renewable Energy in Developing Countries, edited by Fredrick J. Hitzhusen and Robert D. Macgregor, Horizons (Columbus, OH), 1987; The Constitution of Good Societies, edited by Karol Edward Soltan and Stephen L. Elkin, Pennsylvania State University Press (University Park, PA), 1996; Australia Reshaped: 200 Years of Institutional Transformation, edited by Geoffrey Brennan and Francis G. Castles, Cambridge University Press (Cambridge, England), 2002; and Deliberation and Decision, edited by Anne van Aaken, Christian List, and Christoph Lütge, Ashgate (Aldershot, England), 2003.
Contributor of scholarly articles to journals, including British Journal of Political Science, Political Studies, and Society and Natural Resources. Contributor of book reviews to periodicals, including American Political Science Review, Europe-Asia Studies, and Political Studies.
Editor, Australian Journal of Political Science, 1995-99; corresponding editor, Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, 1998—; associate editor, Journal of Political Philosophy, 2000-2001.
The author or editor of over ten books, John S. Dryzek is a prolific political scientist and professor. Indeed he has participated in numerous scholarly conferences, contributed many chapters to books, and has regularly reviewed books for various periodicals. Quite a few of Dryzek's books connect the topic of political science to environmental issues in order to explore how governmental policies on the environment are formed. Such books include Rational Ecology: Environment and Political Economy, The Politics of the Earth: Environmental Discourses, Debating the Earth: The Environmental Politics Reader, and Green States and Social Movements: Environmentalism in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and Norway.
The Politics of the Earth explores environmental ideologies as well as the forms of discourse that are employed to define them. Thus, according to Australian Journal of Political Science contributor Lorraine Elliott, the book "offers a bridge between the ‘environmental philosophy’ and ‘environmental policy’ literatures" and is "informed by a strong understanding of both." The book posits that there are four schools of environmental thought, which are defined by how they do or do not relate to industrialism. This, then, gives rise to four types of political action ranging from reformist to radical. Elliott, acknowledging these assertions, found The Politics of the Earth to be "a very useful introduction to and explanation of the complex permutations of green thought." Although Nadja Marinova, writing in Journal of Environment & Development, felt that the book's "discussion remains mostly theoretical and isolated from political realities," she, too, noted that the volume is "an informative starting point for anyone interested in environmental issues."
As the coeditor of Debating the Earth, Dryzek presents an extensive collection of essays exploring the development of environmentalism over the decades. The book is so comprehensive that Environment contributor Andrew Jordan commented that the "impressively diverse collection of writings … succeed brilliantly." Perhaps this is because Dryzek himself takes a different look at the political-environmental debate.
For instance, in a Polity review of Green States and Social Movements, Harlan Wilson noted that "Dryzek's formulation breaks with the traditional assumption in democratic political theory that democracy is about the inclusion and participation of citizens in the state." Based on this statement, the book redefines the government's relationship to environmental groups as either passive-inclusive and active-inclusive, or passive-exclusive and active-exclusive. The book then concludes that a government with an active-exclusive attitude towards environmental groups is least successful when implementing environmental policy.
Green States and Social Movements then uses the governments of the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and Norway as examples of these four classifications and demonstrates how these attitudes have shaped each country's environment—for better or for worse. Based on this, Wilson called the book "an antidote to that mode of political philosophy and environmental thought that is derived from abstract principles of justice."
Dryzek told CA: "It took me a while to realize that I was a writer, in the sense of communicating ideas and crafting arguments in accessible fashion rather than just reporting on research. Some of the pieces I write (especially for academic journals) are fairly technical, but I try to make most of my books more accessible. The overall effect I would like the books to have is to make their readers think hard about some critical issues. These issues concern most of all environmental affairs and democracy. I am both an environmentalist and a radical democrat. I am not interested in converting readers to my own positions on democracy and the environment, but I am interested in promoting an agenda in which these issues are treated with serious attention.
"When I began writing earlier in my career I would carefully construct the logical outline for an article or chapter and then write according to that plan. Now I am much more likely to jot down a few ideas and then just start writing. My first drafts are a bit chaotic so I then set about reorganizing and rewriting. Rewriting is so much easier than writing, so I try to get to that stage as soon as possible. Among my own books my favorite is probably The Politics of the Earth. It is the one I'd most like to read myself. While relatively short, it takes a tour through several decades of environmental affairs. This tour is guided by some simple analytics, and designed to enable the reader to figure out how he or she stands in relation to some crucial issues. I admire powerful writers such as Ed Abbey who combine a deep appreciation of nature with political advocacy and a good story. He is much more of a zealot than I am, but provides an occasional dose of clarity and inspiration."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Australian Journal of Political Science, July, 1998, Peter Beilharz, review of Democracy in Capitalist Times: Ideals, Limits, and Struggles, p. 309; March, 1999, Lorraine Elliott, review of The Politics of the Earth: Environmental Discourses, p. 130.
Ethics, July, 1999, Albert Weale, review of Democracy in Capitalist Times, p. 902; April, 2002, Andrew Levine, review of Deliberative Democracy and Beyond: Liberals, Critics, Contestations, p. 611.
Environment, October, 1999, Andrew Jordan, review of Debating the Earth: The Environmental Politics Reader, p. 44.
Journal of Environment & Development, September, 1998, Nadja Marinova, review of The Politics of the Earth, p. 322.
Journal of Interdisciplinary History, spring, 1997, Raymond Seidelman, review of Political Science in History: Research Programs and Political Traditions, p. 730.
Policy Studies Journal, spring, 1994, Peter deLeon, review of Discursive Democracy: Politics, Policy, and Political Science, p. 176.
Polity, April, 2006, Harlan Wilson, review of Green States and Social Movements: Environmentalism in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and Norway, p. 276.
John S. Dryzek Home Page,http://polsc.anu.edu.au/staff/dryzek/index.htm (July 11, 2006).