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The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde's Open Access research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by University of Strathclyde researchers, including by researchers from the Department of Computer & Information Sciences involved in mathematically structured programming, similarity and metric search, computer security, software systems, combinatronics and digital health.

The Department also includes the iSchool Research Group, which performs leading research into socio-technical phenomena and topics such as information retrieval and information seeking behaviour.

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The inherent tensions arising from attempting to carry out strategic environmental assessments on all policies, plans and programmes

McLauchlan, Anna and Joao, Elsa (2012) The inherent tensions arising from attempting to carry out strategic environmental assessments on all policies, plans and programmes. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 36. pp. 23-33. ISSN 0195-9255

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Abstract

This paper evaluates the tensions that result from routinely applying SEA to all policies, plans and programmes within Scotland. The European Union SEA Directive, effective in many EU member states from 2004, introduced a requirement for environmental assessment of certain plans and programmes. Scotland, a devolved nation within the EU member state of the United Kingdom, aimed to be a ‘world leader in SEA’ by legislating for SEA to be undertaken of all public sector plans, programmes and strategies, with the word ‘strategies’ being equated with ‘policies’. This paper presents detailed data regarding Scottish SEA activity between 2004 and 2007, including responses to consultations on SEA reports. This empirical research found that, reflecting a general difficulty in determining where and when SEA should be applied, engagement with the SEA process was not as widespread as intended (including the pre-screening and screening stages). Eight tensions evident from Scotland's application of SEA are identified, and their broader relevance is examined.