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close this bookConducting Environmental Impact Assessment in Developing Countries (UNU, 1999, 375 pages)
close this folder9. Emerging developments in EIA
close this folder9.6 Social impact assessment
close this folder9.6.4 Steps in the social impact assessment process
View the document(introduction...)
View the document9.6.4.1 Public involvement
View the document9.6.4.2 Identification of alternatives
View the document9.6.4.3 Baseline conditions
View the document9.6.4.4 Scoping
View the document9.6.4.5 Projection of estimated effects
View the document9.6.4.6 Predicting response to impacts
View the document9.6.4.7 Indirect and cumulative impacts
View the document9.6.4.8 Change in alternatives
View the document9.6.4.9 Mitigation
View the document9.6.4.10 Monitoring

9.6.4.1 Public involvement

· Develop an effective public involvement plan to involve all potentially affected publics.

This requires identifying and working with all potentially affected groups, starting at the very beginning of planning for the proposed action. Groups affected by proposed actions include those who live nearby; those who will hear, smell, or see a development; those who are forced to relocate because of a project; and those who have an interest in a new project or policy change but may not live in proximity. Others affected include those who might normally use the land on which the project is located (such as farmers who have to plough around a transmission line). Still others include those affected by the influx of seasonal residents who may have to pay higher prices for food or rent, or pay higher taxes to cover the cost of expanded community services.

Once identified, representatives from each group should be systematically interviewed to determine potential areas of concern/impact, and ways in which each representative might be involved in the planning decision process. Public meetings by themselves are inadequate for collecting information about public perceptions. Survey data can be used to define the potentially affected population. In this step, the pieces are put in place for a public involvement programme which will last throughout the EIA and SIA processes.