Toward a new framework to select Environmental Assessment Tools for Assessing the Performance of Sustainable Communities

Mr Islam Sallam (2007). Toward a new framework to select Environmental Assessment Tools for Assessing the Performance of Sustainable Communities PhD Thesis, School of Geography, Planning and Architecture, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Mr Islam Sallam
Thesis Title Toward a new framework to select Environmental Assessment Tools for Assessing the Performance of Sustainable Communities
School, Centre or Institute School of Geography, Planning and Architecture
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2007-08
Thesis type PhD Thesis
Supervisor Prof. Richard Hyde
Mr.Bob Pagan
Total pages 301
Total colour pages 46
Total black and white pages 255
Subjects 310000 Architecture, Urban Environment and Building
Formatted abstract The shift to sustainable communities has increasingly involved incorporating Environmental
Assessment into the design and planning process of cities. This approach needs to be assessed
with continuous evaluation and re-evaluation procedures often called a monitoring process. It is
argued that if such an approach can assist decision makers in setting policies and obtaining
reliable feedback. Research into this approach, has identified a range of tools that can measure
the effects of policies on environmental impacts’ improving. The research queries were around
the covering capability of those tools in assessing environmental indicators, the degree of
appropriateness of them to be applied in different contexts with different levels of sources and
expertise. And finally, the effectiveness of them and how to evaluate it? What is required?
However, a wide range of tools has been developed in recent years and the number seems to be
growing; there has been little discourse on whether the tools developed have been successful in
assisting policy makers in meeting their objectives.
The difficulty in monitoring the success or failure of sustainability policy especially in
developing countries is becoming a common phenomenon. However many governments and
environmental organizations are trying to adopt tools to assess their sustainable communities, no
complete criteria for tools' selection could be found. Generally, it is important to determine
whether there is a problem or not, then determine its extent, and finally find the right tools to
assess it. This has raised concerns about the functionality (coverage of environmental indicators,
appropriateness and effectiveness) of tools to carry out comprehensive assessment. It is also
argued that without this evidence based-policy, decision-making could be flawed.
The approach of finding that which is not clear yet, led the research to investigate the
effectiveness of different Environmental Monitoring Systems in different countries by examining
the functionality of their working tools. The proposed research plan tackled the environmental
systems in a systematic process that starts from policy level to benchmark-setting passing
strategy and tools' selection levels. The proposed systematic approach will allow recognizing the
considerable gap between the policy aims and the strategic plans, the advantages and
disadvantages of using EA tools for monitoring strategy implementation and finally, the path that
tools could provide for setting benchmark figures.
The significant of such study is the creation of this framework for examining the functionality
of the EA tools that may assist the decision makers in selecting tools for the monitoring system or
estimate the degree of efficiency that the monitoring system has - if the tools were selected and
applied in an early stage of the development.
Additional Notes Pages No.: 1,24,45,74,109,126,129,131,148,165,166,169,174,175,180,189,190,191,[193-196],[198-201],[203-207],209,212,230,252,288,[290-293],[295-297],[299-301].

 
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Created: Sat, 04 Oct 2008, 23:39:59 EST by Mr Islam Sallam