From the Environmental Issue to an Integrated Approach for Strategic Environmental Assessment

By Alessandro Rinaldi.

Published by The International Journal of the Constructed Environment

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: January 29, 2016 $US5.00

The complexity of the environmental issue influences the planning process, affecting multiple factors and elements of the urbanity. For this reason, the challenge of sustainability requires an integrated approach in order to cope with all critical aspects of planning practice. The Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA), as a tool directly connected to the planning process, represents a great opportunity to explore different kinds of knowledge presented in planning theory, proposing a new integrated way in order to overcame practical separations and divisions. This paper analysed the contributions of three main theoretical fields strongly related with the SEA practice, setting the ground for further research and innovations based on the integration among different elements developed within theoretical debates. These theories are the evaluation in planning which is the main background for environmental evaluation, decision making theories that represent the “working place” of the SEA and, finally, the citizens’ involvement which is the key to producing and to sharing knowledge between planning and environmental processes. The word “integration” acquires a core role to systematize different knowledge and skills. In doing this, the participation to public decision process can help the decision maker to produce environmental accountability, but it is important to clarify in advance each element or variable that affects planning and the SEA process. Overcoming divisions means to know well what is the role of each part, emphasising the potentiality rather than deficiency of all affected subjects.

Keywords: Evaluation in Planning, Decision Theories, Citizen Involvement, Strategic Environmental Assessment

The International Journal of the Constructed Environment, Volume 7, Issue 2, June 2016, pp.1-12. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: January 29, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 637.982KB)).

Alessandro Rinaldi

PhD Candidate, Department of Planning, Design, Architecture Technology, Sapienza - University of Rome, Rome, Italy