CNRS, ARENES - UMR 6051
Public management of problems related to indoor air pollution in France shows a tendency to assign individual responsibility together with abortive attempts at regulation. The article explores these tensions and describes the distribution of roles in managing this health concern among public authorities, residents, and professionals in the early 2000s. A look back in time shows that responsibility has consistently been attributed to individuals when drafting these policies and more widely in the perception by both the general public and the media of the problem. This dominant feature has been aggravated by the failure of a series of attempts in France and internationally to introduce more interventionist regulation of pollutants. Indoor air policies thus show a tendency to use individual responsibility as a means of governing. We hope this analysis will help to find alternatives to the current distribution of roles and responsibilities to limit the deterioration of indoor air quality.