To assess the effectiveness of strategic environmental assessment (SEA) we distinguish between its contribution to the quality of the ultimate policy choice (usefulness, applicability), the procedural quality of the planning process (transparency, timeliness) and the quality of stakeholder participation in the planning process (openness, equity, dialogue). In the context of two case studies involving Dutch planning practice, we argue that when and how an SEA is applied is crucial to understanding its effectiveness, and show that effectiveness depends upon its alignment with, and embedding in, the planning process.

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Keywords Benelux, Content, Controversial planning, Decision-making procedures, Effectiveness, Eurasia, Europe, Netherlands, Process, SEA, Western Europe, decision making, planning practice, planning process, strategic environmental assessment
Persistent URL,
Series ERIM Article Series (EAS)
Journal Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal
van Buuren, M.W, & Nooteboom, S.G. (2009). Evaluating strategic environmental assessment in the Netherlands: Content, process and procedure as indissoluble criteria for effectiveness. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, 27(2), 145–154. doi:10.3152/146155109X454311