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Improving Environmental Performance: Next Generation Compliance

On April 21 and 22, 2015, INECE organised the conference "Improving Environmental Performance: Next Generation Compliance Tools, Theory and Practice”. The event was hosted by Erasmus University in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

The meeting was attended by the Themis Secretariat and representatives from Albania, Kosovo* and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, providing an opportunity to present to the Themis Network the latest academic studies on how to improve compliance.

The theme of the conference was making innovations in environmental compliance assurance using insights and approaches from the social sciences, and the event focused on behavioural and social aspects of next generation compliance. Advances in technology and regulatory design are providing new ways to monitor and detect pollution; manage, use and distribute information; respond to and mitigate environmental impacts; and communicate results to the public and the regulated community. At the same time, social innovations are leading to new approaches to solving organisational and managerial problems related to compliance assurance, namely next generation tools, including advanced monitoring, remote sensing, information analysis and disclosure, management systems, and behavioural motivations.

Keynote remarks were presented on April 21 during a panel session moderated by Campbell Gemmell (University of South Australia/University of Glasgow), with participants including Michael Faure (University of Maastricht), Lee Paddock (George Washington University), Annetje Ottow (University of Utrecht) and Muel Kaptein (Erasmus University). One of the strongest messages was that enforcement and compliance are the pitfall of most strong regulatory systems. Michael Faure focused particularly on the conundrum of the EU environmental acquis and the steps currently being taken to improve its implementation.

Parallel workshop sessions during the conference focused on topics such as regulation as a learning system; ethical behaviour; interventions; self-regulation and self-policing; and smart instruments for public law enforcers.

Conference proceedings will be published at a later date.