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Dissemination of Environmental Information and its Effects on Stakeholders’ Decision-Making: A Comparative Study between Swedish and Polish Municipalities


According to Action Agenda 21, which was adopted at the Rio Conference in 1992, sustainable development is a major objective for local and global development. Economic growth, good living conditions, and protection of the earth’s natural environment are important to all people in the world. This article focuses on one aspect of sustainable development, i.e. on environmental sustainability. Research shows that local government can take a leading position in protecting the natural environment and disseminating information on it among stakeholders. However, our knowledge about the dissemination of environmental information practices among stakeholders is limited. The purpose of this research is to fill a gap in current knowledge, to describe and compare the practical work with dissemination of such information among stakeholders in Swedish and Polish municipalities. The questions to be answered are: What environmental information is collected and produced by the local government ? At what stakeholders is such information targeted ? and What effects does it have on decision-making by stakeholders in the investigated municipalities ? The study is based on state regulations, the homepages of municipal offices, and policy documents, official reports, and semi-structured interviews with key managers responsible for the protection of the natural environment in the studied municipalities. Data were collected from late 2015 to early 2017. This research indicates that dissemination of environmental information has a positive effect on the decision-making of internal stakeholders. In both countries, the municipal authorities follow the EU recommendations, resulting in innovative work and growing environmental awareness among the municipal authorities, the residents, and other stakeholders. Improvement of the natural environment is perceived as “a must” for the future. Nonetheless, especially larger municipalities face challenges because the production and dissemination of environmental information is time-consuming. In the long run, however, surprisingly positive effects on the local protection of the natural environment appear.

Calendario de la edición:
2 veces al año
Temas de la revista:
Social Sciences, Political Science, Local Government and Administration