Incorporating local sustainability indicators into structures of local governance: a review of the literature

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Marijn Meijering

Authors: N. Holman

Publication Year: 2009


Journal: Local Environment

Volume: 14

Issue: 4

Categories: Resilience


Too often studies about sustainability indicators focus either on the science that goes into indicator development seeking to make them rational and relevant or on the soft impacts such as social capital, community empowerment or capacity building that are outcomes of their use. When attention is turned to what effect they have on policy, it is often difficult to discern any link between their use and policy change. This paper seeks to address this problem by consolidating current thinking on indicators and asking the question: How far have notions of governance been incorporated into current research into indicators? The answer to this question has implications for the continuing utility of indicators as policy tools, not only in so far as they are able to aid the evaluation of policy, but also, and arguably more importantly, in how they are able to facilitate relationships between actors and act a catalyst around which various contested meanings of sustainability can be evaluated.


Marijn Meijering