Conceptual and Methodological Advances
Elgar original reference
Edited by Henk A. Becker and Frank Vanclay
Social impact assessment (SIA) is a developing ﬁeld of practice. However, unlike environmental impact assessment (EIA), SIA is not bound by a regulatory context which deﬁnes this practice. This is both a blessing and a curse. It is a blessing in that SIA is not limited to technical practice, but it is a curse in that it is hard to determine the boundaries to SIA. Whereas Becker deﬁnes SIA as ‘the process of identifying the future consequences of a current or proposed action which are related to individuals, organizations and social macro-systems’, Vanclay seeks to broaden this deﬁnition to ‘the process of analysing and managing the intended and unintended consequences of planned interventions on people so as to bring about a more sustainable and equitable biophysical and human environment’. This diﬀerence in deﬁnition is typical of the debates that occur in this International Handbook. The International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) is the home where most of the debates in this book have been nurtured. IAIA was founded in 1981 and has developed as the forum for discussion on impact assessment, and is the leading global authority on best practice in environmental assessment, management and policy. Its website (www.iaia.org) provides useful information and further details. We owe a considerable debt to IAIA for facilitating intellectual inspiration in the ﬁeld of impact assessment. An endeavour such as this also owes gratitude to many individuals. Most signiﬁcantly, Annelies Stolp, Wieger Bakker and Alan Porter provided general...