Impact Assessment and Sustainable Development
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Impact Assessment and Sustainable Development

European Practice and Experience

Edited by Clive George and Colin Kirkpatrick

Translation of the principle of sustainable development into policy and practice, and the evaluation of the outcomes of these strategic interventions, are some of the most pressing challenges facing policymakers in Europe and beyond. The chapters in this book contribute to the debate surrounding these challenges. By exploring the conceptual and methodological issues relating to the evaluation of sustainable development and analysing European practice and experience, this work provides a coherent and integrated contribution to our understanding of these issues.
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Chapter 10: The Selection of Suitable Tools for Sustainability Impact Assessment

Marjan van Herwijnen and Wouter de Ridder


1 Marjan van Herwijnen and Wouter de Ridder I. INTRODUCTION Assessment tools play an important role in decision-making processes. The variety of tools that can be used to carry out assessments is huge. Each tool has its own specific qualities and contributes in a particular way to decision-making processes. Each tool can be used to address different issues, like costs and benefits, short- and long-term effects, global competitiveness and many more key aspects in relation to sustainable development. The Sustainability A-Test project evaluates tools that can be used for sustainability assessments. The overall goal of the Sustainability A-Test is to support the definition and implementation of the EU Sustainable Development Strategy. The project will do this by describing, assessing and comparing tools that can be used to measure or assess sustainable development. At the same time the project strives to improve the scientific underpinning of sustainable development impact assessment. This will be done by building further on on-going work by the UNFCCC secretariat (2005) and UNEP (1998), literature review of the applications of the tools, and a case study. Within the project an evaluation framework will be developed in which the various tools and a number of assessment methods are compared with the requirements of sustainable development assessments. The final output of the project will be an electronic handbook2 to support the selection of suitable tools for SIA. This chapter gives an overview of the primary results of the project and at the same...

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