Exploring the scope of public participation for risk sensitive land use planning in Nepal: a policy review

Sharma, A., Donovan, K., Krishnamurthy, S. and Creed, M. (2022) Exploring the scope of public participation for risk sensitive land use planning in Nepal: a policy review. Sustainability, 14(21), 14137. (doi: 10.3390/su142114137)

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Risk Sensitive Land Use Planning (RSLUP), a process that has implications for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) as well as Urban Planning and Development, requires the participation of the public and wider stakeholders. Public participation has been conceptualized in Nepal’s disaster governance after the country transitioned into a federal democracy. It has undergone decentralization as part of the federal reform process, including its undertakings towards DRR. However, it remains unclear what this redistribution of authority means for public participation in relation to RSLUP. It is important to ask whether the current institutional set up and policy instruments are conducive for public participation. Therefore, this article examines how participation is construed within relevant federal and local policies in Nepal. The article presents a thematic analysis of leading policy instruments. The research reveals that participation emerges as a constitutional principle but the concept of participation itself is characterised by definitional ambiguity. Although most policies encourage the creation of spaces for public participation, this research reveals that these spaces are limited in implementation and impact. Lack of clear guidelines on how to design and implement public participation can hinder effective practice. Non-binding language within policy documents makes it difficult to understand the intended outcome of participation. This paper illustrates the extent to which participation has become a malleable construct that can have repercussions for ways in which RSLUP is enacted and enforced, in both Nepal and other countries who share similar socio-political context.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Creed, Dr Maggie
Authors: Sharma, A., Donovan, K., Krishnamurthy, S., and Creed, M.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Infrastructure and Environment
Journal Name:Sustainability
ISSN (Online):2071-1050
Published Online:29 October 2022
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2022 The Authors
First Published:First published in Sustainability 14(21): 14137
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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