October 15, 2018
Tetsuya Kamijo of the JICA Research Institute attended the International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) Special Symposium: Using Impact Assessment to Achieve the SDGs in Asia. This event was held in Kuching, Malaysia, on October 1 and 2, 2018. Kamijo presented one of the results of his research. The symposium featured 47 oral presentations from about 120 participants, including scholars and practitioners, from 13 countries.
Kamijo discussed the effects of alternatives and public involvement on the overall quality of environmental impact assessment reports for development cooperation projects based on the result of a quality review of 160 reports prepared by JICA from 2001 to 2016. He verified the effects of factors influencing report quality using statistical tests, selected alternatives and public involvement as determinants among several factors, and showed the guidance in the preparation of satisfactory reports.
Kamijo also outlined the importance of high-quality alternatives. Low-quality alternatives would not improve report quality, even with public involvement. Thus, the quality of the alternatives represents the will of the project proponents and public involvement represents public pressure. The goodwill of the proponents, when combined with public pressure can positively influence report quality.
In a subsequent Q&A session, members of the audience commented that these results quantitatively exhibited the importance of alternatives and public involvement in a significant manner. The presentation promoted outreach for the results of the research and networking with scholars and practitioners.