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Julin, Madeleine and Maltseva, Junna, 2011. Participation – lost in translation? : a study of active public involvement in the implementation of the Water Framework Directive in Sweden. Second cycle, A1E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Urban and Rural Development



In 2000 the Water Framework Directive (WFD) entered into force in the European Union. The Directive aims at improving water quality and achieving a good water status for the next generations.

This paper aims at studying the implementation of the EU WFD in Sweden in relation to public participation within water management. There is no clear definition in the text of the WFD of how this public participation should be achieved, which allows for many different interpretations of how participatory processes should be carried out.

Empirical data of two case studies from different parts of Sweden, Kiladalen (in Södermanland) and Gotland, was used to analyze constraints and opportunities for deliberative democratic processes to emerge. The analysis was based on theories of ecological modernization and public participation.

The study indicates that deliberative democratic processes depend on willingness and knowledge of authority representatives who have the power to decide over public involvement. Since the legally binding requirements for participation in the WFD are very low, institutions with no interest and/or knowledge in including the public in decision making can choose not to use higher level of participation than required. On the other hand freedom to interpret active involvement of the people allows the creation of deliberative democratic process from the very beginning, defining the problem and creating a common view of the future, in order to deal with environmental threats.

Main title:Participation – lost in translation?
Subtitle:a study of active public involvement in the implementation of the Water Framework Directive in Sweden
Authors:Julin, Madeleine and Maltseva, Junna
Supervisor:Hansen, Hans Peter
Examiner:Rai Peterson, Tarla
Volume/Sequential designation:UNSPECIFIED
Year of Publication:2011
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A1E
Student's programme affiliation:NG006 Miljökommunikation - magisterprogram
Supervising department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Urban and Rural Development
(LTJ, LTV) > Dept. of Urban and Rural Development
Keywords:participation, Water Framework Directive, water management, water council, Kiladalen, Gotland
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Public administration
Water resources and management
Deposited On:13 Jun 2011 13:46
Metadata Last Modified:20 Apr 2012 14:20

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