IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

A clear case of 'doublespeak': the Swedish governmental SEA implementation discourse


  • Tuija Hilding-Rydevik
  • Ann Åkerskog


Discourse serves as a fundamental prerequisite for human action - as is displayed by the implementation in Swedish local spatial planning of the EU 'Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) Directive' which forms the focus of this paper. The national Swedish SEA policy discourse, following from the EU Directive, presents a clear case of 'doublespeak'. The major mobilising metaphor emerging from the discourse analysis is the concept of efficiency backed by the pronouncement of continuity. Major benefits for local spatial planning are outlined while at the same time assurance is given that no new efforts or added costs are foreseen for the municipalities. The role of the SEA is downsized in relation to sustainable development and to the Environmental Impact Assessment of projects. In order to fully interrogate this debate the current paper combines a policy implementation approach with a discourse perspective.

Suggested Citation

  • Tuija Hilding-Rydevik & Ann Åkerskog, 2011. "A clear case of 'doublespeak': the Swedish governmental SEA implementation discourse," Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 54(4), pages 495-515.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jenpmg:v:54:y:2011:i:4:p:495-515
    DOI: 10.1080/09640568.2010.517989

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:taf:jenpmg:v:54:y:2011:i:4:p:495-515. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chris Longhurst). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.