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Table 1 Perspectives to openness in "external participation" for five example assessment approaches considered according to the dimensions of openness framework.

From: Openness in participation, assessment, and policy making upon issues of environment and environmental health: a review of literature and recent project results

Dimension/Approach Scope of participation Access to information Timing of openness Scope of contribution Impact of contribution
Open assessment Everyone, e.g. decision makers, NGO's, citizens, external experts, allowed to participate. User participation particularly important. All information should be made available to all participants. Continuous. All aspects of the issue can be addressed by everyone. Based on relevance and reasoning, not source. All relevant contributions must be taken into account. Conclusions from collaboration intended to turn into action through collective knowledge creation among participants in a shared web-workspace.
IEHIA Specified users (e.g. policy makers), and stakeholders (preferably by proxy) invited to participate. ? User and stakeholder participation during issue framing, design and appraisal phases (not during execution phase). Users and stakeholders can participate in scoping and design of assessment and interpretation of results. Participant views influence the construction of the assessment framework. Appraisal phase discourse regarding the assessment results, their implications for action, and their linkage to the goals defined in issue framing assumed to ensure that those involved accept the outcomes.
YVA Public, liaison authority (e.g. regional environmental center), other authorities. Assessment plan and assessment report provided to the public by the project developer. Liaison authority also has access to information regarding e.g. other plans, projects and operations relevant to the project. Participation in two phases. Public hearing periods, possible authority statements regarding both assessment plan and assessment report. Liaison authority gives its statements after the public and the other authority statements. Any public representative can give any statements, and the liaison authority may ask specific statements from other authorities in both phases. Liaison authority gives an overall statement on both the assessment plan and the assessment report. Public statements filed along with the liaison authority statements. Ultimately up to the project developers and the decision makers to decide if and how public statements are taken account of in project design or decision making. The liaison authority, also taking account of public and other authority statements, can also demand e.g. certain issues to be considered in the assessment or other additional information to be provided by the project developer.
Red Book N/A (Assessment for nominated scientific experts only). N/A N/A N/A Assessment results provided for decision makers and intended to be taken into account, alongside options evaluation, in decision making and action by federal agencies.
Silver Book Decision-makers, technical specialists, and other stakeholders. Formal provisions for internal and external stakeholders at all stages. At all stages: problem formulation and scoping, planning and conduct of risk assessment, and risk management. Problem formulation and scoping, confirmation of utility of risk assessment, and risk management. Stakeholders as active participants. However, participation should in no way compromise the technical assessment of risk, which is carried out under its own standards and guidelines.
  1. ? = could not be determined based on the information source, N/A = not applicable.