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A tool to analyse instruments for soil governance: the REEL-framework (2018)

Juerges N., Hagemann N., Bartke S.

Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning, 20 (5), 617-631

doi:10.1080/1523908x.2018.1474731

Abstract

Societies need to govern soils to maintain the various ecosystem services provided to humans, for instance ensuring food security, biodiversity conservation, water regulation or carbon sequestration. Developing suitable policy instruments is therefore a precondition to implementing sustainable soil management practices. However, there is a lack of analytical tools to systematically describe the performance of instruments for soil governance. This paper presents and applies an analytical framework for soil governance. Governance performance is assessed with the following dimensions: capacity to support resilience, effectiveness, efficiency, and legitimacy (REEL). We also specify each dimension in more detail by using indicators to enable an assessment of each criterion. These core indicators need to be analysed on different spatial and temporal scales. The development of the framework was based on a review of existing literature on environmental and natural resource governance. It is built upon existing frameworks and focuses specifically on a systematic description and evaluation of instruments. Additionally, the paper shows two examples of how to apply the framework: A systematic description of agri-environmental and climate measures (AECM) in Germany’s Free State of Saxony and an ex-ante policy comparison of two instruments for steering land-development.

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