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A 'Legislation-Check' based on '3-D Sustainability' - Addressing global precautionary land governance
Department of Conservation Biology, Vegetation- and Landscape Ecology, Faculty Centre for Biodiversity, Faculty of Life Sciences, University of Vienna, Austria.
2012 (English)In: Land use policy, ISSN 0264-8377, Vol. 29, no 3, p. 652-660Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper aims to provide a new and practical approach called 'Legislation-Check' to identifying shortcomings in national legislation in terms of how well it implements sustainable development, and ways of improving the legislation. National legislation was chosen as it represents a sort of 'skeleton of society' and defines the status quo, as well as setting the main environmental, societal and economic directions of the population covered.The approach presented is based on a new concept called '3-D Sustainability', which focuses on the precautionary principle. 3-D Sustainability provides criteria in a flexible hierarchy for solving conflicts of interest between economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainability. In this paper, these criteria and dimensions are applied to various sectors of Austrian national environmental legislation to identify the shortcomings of the legislation and ways of addressing these shortcomings.This paper shows, by way of quantitative data, a significant increase in the use of sustainability related terms in generally applicable legal instruments (both federal and provincial) in Austria since 2003. In qualitative terms the results of the paper further indicate, using national environmental legislation, several hierarchical disorders between different legal acts and opportunities for improving them. Furthermore, inadequacies in the way that the legislation handles sustainable development and a total lack of overall objectives and targets in terms of sustainability are highlighted, which can jeopardise sustainable development.The concept of '3-D Sustainability' has not previously focused on national legislation, despite the practical importance of the legal implementation and enforcement on this geographic level. Hence, this paper contributes, through scientifically-based decision support, to practical pathways for the innovation of institutional, procedural and substantive arrangements in existing legislation.The approach presented in this paper is not restricted to environmental issues, but is applicable to all thematic areas. It is also not geographically limited, but could be implemented in any country and also beyond national borders. Furthermore, the approach can be easily replicated and provides systematically gained results for global governance change towards sustainable development. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 29, no 3, p. 652-660
Keywords [en]
Decision support, Environmental legislation, Global governance change, Method, Sustainability assessment, decision support system, quantitative analysis, sustainable development, three-dimensional modeling, Austria
National Category
Law
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-38016DOI: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2011.10.008Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84855287292OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-38016DiVA, id: diva2:1378713
Available from: 2019-12-13 Created: 2019-12-13 Last updated: 2019-12-13Bibliographically approved

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Mauerhofer, Volker

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