Using Goals in Environmental Management: The Swedish System of Environmental Objectives Article First Online: 08 July 2004 DOI:
Cite this article as: Edvardsson, K. Environmental Management (2004) 34: 170. doi:10.1007/s00267-004-3073-3 Abstract
In Sweden, environmental policy is essentially carried out through a system of environmental objectives adopted by Parliament in the late 1990s. This system contains principles, objectives, interim targets, strategies, and follow-up mechanisms, which together provide a solid ground for increased efficiency and improved prioritization in environmental policies. Despite the ambitious approach of the Swedish Parliament, the system of environmental objectives suffers from certain shortcomings. Some of the objectives are imprecise and difficult to evaluate, and there are no rules or principles that may be used to solve goal conflicts and to prioritize between different objectives. As a consequence, the environmental objectives tend to differ in their degrees of operationalizability, and the priority-setting between different objectives is often unclear.
Goal-setting Environmental objectives Goal conflicts Precision Evaluability
*Rskr. denotes a written communication (from the Swedish Parliament to the Swedish Government) of a Parliamentary decision.
Note: This version was published online in June 2005 with the cover date of August 2004. Literature Cited
Barber, W. E., Taylor, J. N. 1990 The importance of goals, objectives, and values in the fisheries management process and organization: A review North American Journal of Fisheries Management 10 365 373 Google Scholar
Berlin, I. 1988. On the pursuit of the ideal.
New York Review of Books March 17, pp. 11–18.
Bertram, P. E., Reynoldson, T. B. 1992 Developing ecosystem objectives for the Great Lakes: Policy, progress and public participation Journal of Aquatic Ecosystem Health 1 89 95 Google Scholar
Brosius, J. P., Tsing, A. L., Zerner, C. 1998 Representing communities: Histories and politics of community-based natural resource management Society and Natural Resources 11 157 168 Google Scholar
Carroll, S. J., Tosi, H. L. 1973Management by objectives: Applications and research The Macmillan Company New York 216 Google Scholar
Costanza, R. 1992 Toward an operational definition of ecosystem health Costanza, R. Norton, B. G. Haskell, B. D. eds. Ecosystem health: New goals for environmental management Island Press Washington, D.C. 239 256 Google Scholar
Decision No 1600/2002/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 July 2002 laying down the Sixth Community Environment Action Programme.
Edvardsson, K, Hansson, S. O. 2004 When is a goal rational? Forthcoming in Social Choice and Welfare . . Google Scholar
Forssell, A. 2001 Reform theory meets new public management Christensen, T. Laegreid, P. eds. New public management: The transformation of ideas and practice Ashgate Aldershot 261 287 Google Scholar
Fortmann, L., Roe, E., Van Eeten, M. 2001 At the threshold between governance and management: Community-based natural resource management in Southern Africa Public Administration and Development 21 171 185 Google Scholar
Goodland, R. 1997 Biophysical and objective environmental sustainability Dragun, A. K. Jakobsson, K. M. eds. Sustainability and global environmental policy: New perspectives Edward Elgar Publishing Cheltenham 63 95 Google Scholar
Gov. Bill 1990/91:90. En god livsmilj ¶ [A good living environment].
Gov. Bill 1997/98:145. Svenska milj ¶m ¥l. Milj ¶politik f ¶r ett h ¥llbart Sverige [Swedish environmental quality objectives: An environmental policy for a sustainable Sweden].
Gov. Bill 2000/01:65. Kemikaliestrategi f ¶r giftfri milj ¶ [A chemicals strategy for a non-toxic environment].
Gov. Bill 2000/01:130. Svenska milj ¶m ¥l, delm ¥l och ¥tg ¤rdsstrategier [The Swedish environmental objectives: Interim targets and action strategies].
Gov. Bill 2001/02:55. Sveriges klimatstrategi [Sweden’s climate strategy].
Hansson, S. O. 1998 Should we avoid moral dilemmas? Journal of Value Inquiry 32 407 416 Google Scholar
Hansson, S. O., Helgesson, G. 2003 What is stability? Synthese 136 219 235 Google Scholar
Hull, R. B., Richert, D., Seekamp, E., Robertson, D., Buhyoff, G. J. 2003 Understandings of environmental quality: Ambiguities and values held by environmental professionals Environmental Management 31 1 13 PubMed Google Scholar
Kalf, D. F., Crommentuijn, T., Van de Plassche, E. J. 1997 Environmental quality objectives for 10 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 36 89 97 PubMed Google Scholar
Lackey, R. T. 1998 Seven pillars of ecosystem management Landscape and Urban Planning 40 21 30 Google Scholar
Locke, E. A., Latham, G. P. 1990A theory of goal setting and task performance Prentice-Hall International Englewood Cliffs, NJ Google Scholar
Lowe, P., Ward, N., Potter, C. 1999 Attitudinal and institutional indicators for sustainable agriculture Brouwer, F. Crabtree, B. eds. Environmental indicators and agricultural policy CABI Publishing Cambridge, Massachusetts, Wallingford 263 278 Google Scholar
Mitcham, C. 1995 The concept of sustainable development: Its origins and ambivalence Technology in Society 17 311 326 Google Scholar
Norton, B. G. 1992 A new paradigm for environmental management Costanza, R. Norton, B. G. Haskell, B. D. eds. Ecosystem health: New goals for environmental management Island Press Washington D.C. 23 41 Google Scholar
Odiorne, G. S. 1969Management decisions by objectives Prentice-Hall International Englewood Cliffs, NJ Google Scholar
Okey, B. W. 1996 Systems approaches and properties, and agroecosystem health Journal of Environmental Management 48 187 199 Google Scholar
Peterson, T. R. 1997Sharing the earth: The rhetoric of sustainable development University of South Carolina Press Columbia, SC, 238 pp Google Scholar
Raia, A. P. 1974Managing by objectives Scott Foresman and Company, Glenview, Ill. Google Scholar
Rose, N. 1991 Governing by numbers: Figuring out democracy Accounting, Organizations and Society 16 673 692 Google Scholar
Rskr. 1997/98:13. Ekologisk h ¥llbarhet [Ecological sustainability].
SEOC (Swedish Environmental Objectives Council). 2002. The fifteen environmental objectives—are we on track? A progress report from the Swedish Environmental Objectives Council.
SEOC (Swedish Environmental Objectives Council). 2003. Sweden’s environmental objectives—will the interim targets be achieved? A progress report from the Swedish Environmental Objectives Council.
SEPA (Swedish Environmental Protection Agency). 1999a. System med indikatorer f ¶r nationell uppf ¶ljning av milj ¶kvalitetsm ¥len. Report of the SEPA (5006).
SEPA (Swedish Environmental Protection Agency). 1999b. Samordning och m ¥lkonflikter: Sektorintegreringens m ¶jligheter och problem. Report of the SEPA (5008).
Shrader-Frechette, K. S., McCoy, E. D. 1993Method in ecology: Strategies for conservation Cambridge University Press Cambridge Google Scholar
Slocombe, D. S. 1998 Defining goals and criteria for ecosystem-based management Environmental Management 22 483 493 PubMed Google Scholar
Suter, G. W. 1993 A critique of ecosystem health concepts and indexes Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 12 1533 1539 Google Scholar
Takacs, D. 1996The idea of biodiversity: Philosophies of paradise Johns Hopkins University Press Baltimore Google Scholar
Van Herten, L. M., Gunning-Schepers, L. J. 2000 Targets as a tool in health policy. Part I: Lessons learned Health Policy 52 1 11 PubMed Google Scholar
Van Wenum, J., Buys, J., Wossink, A. 1999 Nature quality indicators in agriculture Brouwer, F. Crabtree, B. eds. Environmental indicators and agricultural policy CABI Publishing Cambridge Massachusetts, Wallingford 105 120 Google Scholar
Wand ©n, S. 1997. M ¥lkonflikter och styrmedel: Ett centralt milj ¶strategiskt problem. Report of the SEPA (4800).
Wicklum, D., Davies, R. W. 1995 Ecosystem health and integrity Canadian Journal of Botany 73 997 1000 Google Scholar
Williams, P. M. 2002 Community strategies: Mainstreaming sustainable development and strategic planning Sustainable Development 10 197 205 Google Scholar
Wilson, G. A., Buller, H. 2001 The use of socio-economic and environmental indicators in assessing the effectiveness of EU agri-environmental policy European Environment 11 297 313 Google Scholar
World Commission on Environment and Development 1987Our common future Oxford University Press Oxford Google Scholar
Xu, W., Mage, J. A. 2001 A review of concepts and criteria for assessing agroecosystem health including a preliminary case study of southern Ontario Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment 83 215 233 Google Scholar Copyright information
© Springer-Verlag New York, Inc. 2004