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Impact assessment in the European Commission – a system with multiple objectives

Bäcklund, Ann-Katrin LU (2009) In Environmental Science and Policy 12(8). p.1077-1087
Abstract
Impact assessment (IA) is an instrument that is gradually making inroads into European Union policy making. Great ambitions are tied to the introduction of a compulsory system of IA as a way to achieve better regulation but also as a tool to improve legitimacy of government and increase unity in European politics. In order to raise the quality of the

assessments, which has been questioned, there is a call for application of more evidencebased methods. As a result, there might be a window of opportunity for greater use of scientific support in impact assessment work.

However, the EC’s IA systemhas several overlapping and partly contradictory objectives – to produce estimates about possible future impacts is only one of... (More)
Impact assessment (IA) is an instrument that is gradually making inroads into European Union policy making. Great ambitions are tied to the introduction of a compulsory system of IA as a way to achieve better regulation but also as a tool to improve legitimacy of government and increase unity in European politics. In order to raise the quality of the

assessments, which has been questioned, there is a call for application of more evidencebased methods. As a result, there might be a window of opportunity for greater use of scientific support in impact assessment work.

However, the EC’s IA systemhas several overlapping and partly contradictory objectives – to produce estimates about possible future impacts is only one of them. The IA system should be understood as a political instrument shaped by its multiple objectives and the political context of permanent negotiations in which it is situated. The arguments put forward emanate from a close reading of EC documents concerning IA procedures and the ambitions they display paired with assessment practices as revealed

in interviews with officials in the main EU institutions, trying to perform IAs and to cope with the political balancing act they are embedded in.

(C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Science and policy interface, EU, Impact assessment
in
Environmental Science and Policy
volume
12
issue
8
pages
1077 - 1087
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • wos:000272283800002
  • scopus:70350575356
ISSN
1462-9011
DOI
10.1016/j.envsci.2009.04.003
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
656a01ea-f575-4555-8a69-76fd99534913 (old id 1452123)
date added to LUP
2009-10-15 10:37:05
date last changed
2017-09-17 05:14:20
@article{656a01ea-f575-4555-8a69-76fd99534913,
  abstract     = {Impact assessment (IA) is an instrument that is gradually making inroads into European Union policy making. Great ambitions are tied to the introduction of a compulsory system of IA as a way to achieve better regulation but also as a tool to improve legitimacy of government and increase unity in European politics. In order to raise the quality of the<br/><br>
assessments, which has been questioned, there is a call for application of more evidencebased methods. As a result, there might be a window of opportunity for greater use of scientific support in impact assessment work.<br/><br>
However, the EC’s IA systemhas several overlapping and partly contradictory objectives – to produce estimates about possible future impacts is only one of them. The IA system should be understood as a political instrument shaped by its multiple objectives and the political context of permanent negotiations in which it is situated. The arguments put forward emanate from a close reading of EC documents concerning IA procedures and the ambitions they display paired with assessment practices as revealed<br/><br>
in interviews with officials in the main EU institutions, trying to perform IAs and to cope with the political balancing act they are embedded in.<br/><br>
(C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.},
  author       = {Bäcklund, Ann-Katrin},
  issn         = {1462-9011},
  keyword      = {Science and policy interface,EU,Impact assessment},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {8},
  pages        = {1077--1087},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Environmental Science and Policy},
  title        = {Impact assessment in the European Commission – a system with multiple objectives},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2009.04.003},
  volume       = {12},
  year         = {2009},
}