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  • 1.
    Balfors, Berit
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Wallström, J.
    Anthesis Enveco AB, Barnhusgatan 4, S-11123 Stockholm, Sweden..
    Lundberg, K.
    Ecoloop AB, Katarinavagen 7, S-11646 Stockholm, Sweden..
    Söderqvist, T.
    Anthesis Enveco AB, Barnhusgatan 4, S-11123 Stockholm, Sweden..
    Hornberg, C.
    Environm Law & Dev SWE AB, Birger Jarlsgatan 2, S-11434 Stockholm, Sweden..
    Högström, Johan
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability and Environmental Engineering.
    Strategic environmental assessment in Swedish municipal planning. Trends and challenges2018In: Environmental impact assessment review, ISSN 0195-9255, E-ISSN 1873-6432, Vol. 73, p. 152-163Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    More than a decade after the implementation of the EU Directive on Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) into Swedish legislation, a comprehensive study has been conducted to analyze the development of SEA practice in municipal planning. The analysis was based on a nationwide mapping of SEA in Swedish municipal comprehensive plans and municipal sector plans, such as energy plans and waste plans, which were adopted in the period 2004-2014. The mapping was used for obtaining evidence of, and explanations for, the extent to which SEAs have been carried out and to enable an identification of the presence of alternatives and specified purposes of the plan. In this paper, the result of the analysis of the development of SEA practice is presented, which shows that municipal comprehensive plans had an SEA to an increasingly greater extent, up to on average 90% for the period 2010-2014. For waste plans and energy plans, corresponding figures for the same period were significantly lower. In addition, the result shows a decreasing trend between 2006 and 2014 regarding the proportion of SEAs that included more than one plan alternative. The use of a zero alternative, however, increased from 2006 to 2014. A regression analysis was conducted to identify determinants that explain the variation in the degree to which screening and SEAs were conducted. The findings of the study show that a systematic mapping of SEA practice provides empirical basis for the development of policy measures to enhance the use of SEAS in municipal planning. Furthermore, it is argued that strengthening the link between alternatives and the purposes of the plan may foster a more strategic thinking when identifying reasonable alternatives on how to promote sustainable development within the planning. Moreover, it is argued that mandatory SEA should be considered in municipal comprehensive and sector planning.

  • 2.
    Högström, Johan
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Towards Sustainable Urban Development in Expansive Urban Regions: Conditions and Challenges for Municipal Spatial Planning Practice2017Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    From the local to the global level, there is a growing insight that human actions are having a profound and wide-reaching impact on natural and social systems. As a consequence, there is a need for sustainable development and planners are now challenged to integrate social, ecological and economic aspects in utilized planning process that span from the regional to the local. Thus, to put sustainability into practice requires a multi-level approach that takes into consideration the actions and the development in different countries, societies, cities and communities. In other words, sustainability is dependent on the performance and outcomes of multi-level systems of governance (including planning systems) across different contexts. Based on two case studies in the expansive Stockholm region, this thesis aims to explore the conditions for spatial planning to support a shift towards sustainable urban development. More specifically, it aims to provide an in-depth understanding of the conditions for spatial planning practice to promote sustainability in a context of rapid urban expansion and to analyze the management and utilization of available statutory planning instruments as a means to foster an effective interplay in planning practice. The results show that a shift towards sustainable urban development requires that planning practices are allowed to engage in learning processes with the aim to emancipate an effective interplay throughout systems of governance. In particular, it is important that planning processes are able to (i) integrate knowledge from ‘strategic’ levels with local project-specific conditions that are revealed throughout the detailed development planning process and (ii) make use of this synthesized body of knowledge to inform decision-making. The interplay in planning practice is an important mechanism to link ‘direction’ and ‘action’ in planning practice.

  • 3.
    Högström, Johan
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability and Environmental Engineering.
    Balfors, Bent
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management. Sodertorn Univ, Sch Nat Sci Technol & Environm Studies, S-14189 Huddinge, Sweden..
    Hammer, Monica
    Sodertorn Univ, Sch Nat Sci Technol & Environm Studies, S-14189 Huddinge, Sweden..
    The role of small-scale planning projects in urban development: A case study in the metropolitan Stockholm region, Sweden2019In: Land use policy, ISSN 0264-8377, E-ISSN 1873-5754, Vol. 84, p. 294-304Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    As urban areas are developing and becoming increasingly important for dealing with sustainability goals and challenges, it is of the essence not to overlook the impacts created by the local, small-scale processes taking place across metropolitan regions. Based on a case study conducted in the expansive Stockholm region, this study explores the challenges associated with linking small-scale development to long-term overall strategy and development in municipal spatial planning. More specifically, it explores planning practitioners' experiences of how local planning processes are organized to deal with established cross-cutting sustainability goals and the conditions for promoting sustainability in small-scale development projects. The results show that municipal planners face several organizational, procedural, and knowledge-related challenges that also influence the interplay between public and private actors in the process. To promote suStainable trajectories at the local level, it is necessary to devote resources and build capacity to further develop the relationship and interdependency between the processes of translation and formalization, which constitute an important link between the project-specific planning process and the overall strategy and development.

  • 4.
    Högström, Johan
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Balfors, Berit
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Hammer, Monica
    Södertörn University.
    Planning for sustainability in expansive metropolitan regions: exploring practices and planners’ expectations in Stockholm, Sweden2017In: European Planning Studies, ISSN 0965-4313, E-ISSN 1469-5944Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In Sweden, local and regional planning practices are faced with the challenge of managing rapid growth in expansive urban regions. However, spatial planning should also contribute to the fulfilment of formalized sustainability objectives and support sustainable development. This includes addressing cross-cutting sustainability issues that transcend established administrative and territorial boundaries. Thus, the management of sustainability issues requires attention from actors at different levels, and challenges how contemporary planning practices plan for development. Based in the expansive Stockholm region, this study explores the cross-level interaction in spatial planning and decision-making and planning practitioners' experiences and apprehensions of contemporary municipal planning practices with a focus on statutory plans to achieve sustainability targets and objectives. The results show that municipal planning organizations are under pressure because of rapid urban expansion. It is concluded that the role, format and content of statutory as well as informal planning instruments are decisive for the cross-level interaction between planning levels. Moreover, planning instruments find new trajectories resulting in mismatches in expectations from planners at adjacent planning levels. This influences the interplay and preconditions for achieving national and regional sustainability targets and objectives.

  • 5.
    Högström, Johan
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Balfors, Berit
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Hammer, Monica
    Södertörn University.
    PROMOTING SUSTAINABILITY IN SMALL-SCALE URBAN DEVELOPMENT: EXPLORING CONDITIONS FOR LOCAL PLANNING PRACTICE IN STOCKHOLM, SWEDENManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
  • 6.
    Högström, Johan
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Balfors, Berit
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Hammer, Monica
    Södertörns Högskola.
    Brokking, Pieter
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Urban Planning and Environment, Urban and Regional Studies.
    Organization of municipal planning processes for enhanced sustainability: examples from peri-urban areas in Stockholm, SwedenManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This study analyzes how local planning processes are organized and the possibilities to consolidate sustainability issues in urban development. The results show that the municipalities use different approaches, and that municipalities engage with challenges associated with different phases of the urban development planning process. The case study identifies three main lessons related to the enhancement of sustainability in the planning process. First, sustainability issues need to be brought into the center for consideration at an early stage of the planning process. Second, to have non-technical sustainability issues, which are often in the periphery of the planning process, become embedded in planning process, there is a need to evaluate existing rules for process participation. Third, to enhance sustainability in municipal spatial planning, there is a need to complement the existing project-based approach to planning with an ongoing learning process in which practitioners from different levels can exchange experiences and expectations regarding the existing institutional setting.

  • 7.
    Högström, Johan
    et al.
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Balfors, Berit
    KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Sustainability Assessment and Management.
    Hammer, Monica
    Södertörns Högskola.
    Stjernberg, Mats
    Nordregio.
    Lidmo, Johannes
    Nordregio.
    Exploring Processes of Contextualization and Concretization: Navigating the Road to Realization in Local Level Spatial Planning Practices in Stockholm, SwedenManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    New governance approaches challenge prevailing statutory planning practices since urban development initiatives emanate not only from central and local government. This study explores the road to realization, i.e. how local planning practices organize the process of assessing the appropriateness of urban development initiatives. The results show how planning organizations face a variety of interrelated organizational and procedural conditions and choices that make planning situations unique and contextual. To deal with this contextuality, planners use processes of contextualization and concretization to relate an initiative to its environment and to gradually transform an initiative to a final land use design.

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