Characteristics of Public Participation in EA: the Potential to Improve Sustainable Environmental Management in China

  •  Jing Du    
  •  Fenglin Yang    
  •  Ling Xu    
  •  Sachihiko Harashina    
  •  Binghua Li    


Public participation as one of the key concepts underpinning the principles and practice of good governance has been attached more and more importance by Chinese government, however, the current situation suggesting that it is not yet ripe for full public participation in China. This study reviews the origin and current situation of public participation in China, and based on reviews and interviews carried out in 2009 it argues that the legislative provisions for public participation are still confined to high-sounding principles. It goes on to argue that its weak enforcement in China lies not only in the undefined procedure of public participation according to the regulations, but also in the degree of information disclosure and a lack of active consultation, amongst other reasons. With reference to experience of public participation in neighbouring Japan, some recommendations to improve the weaknesses are proposed.

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