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Simulation games in the Regulatory Impact Assessment – Simulation of the implementation of the EIA Amending Directive 2014/52/EU

Martin Führ, Jaqui Dopfer, Kilian Bizer, Stefan Balla, Thomas Bunge, Julian Schenten and Sven Schicketanz

elni Review 2018, Issue 1, pp. 17-24. https://doi.org/10.46850/elni.2018.004

Laws have the task of influencing the behaviour of the respective addressees in such a way that the legislator achieves their intended goals. A (new) law would not be required if existing framework conditions were already designed such that regulatory goals could be achieved. In this case actors would already have sufficient incentives to behave in a targeted manner. But this is not usually the case; on the contrary: legislation has the task of addressing "non-conforming" behaviour and of getting actors to participate in the implementation of regulatory goals. This is a demanding task and applies even in cases where compliance can be assumed. However, it is even more difficult if evasive behaviour is to be expected or it is feared that the addressees could develop and implement individual or collusive counter-strategies. 
The present contribution and the underlying simulation games on the EIA Amending Directive were funded by the German Federal Environment Agency in the research project "Further development of the EIA instrument – solution proposals and simulation game for the implementation of the EIA Amending Directive 2014/52/EU" (duration 2015 – 2017) within the environmental research plan.
This essay is split into two parts. The first part primarily regards the experience from the simulation game on the EIA Amending Directive, which was aligned with the new version of the German Environmental Impact Assessment Act (EIAA). The second part of the essay, which will be published in the next issue of the elni Review, deals with experiences from other simulation games and, based on this, describes more comprehensively the possibilities and limits of simulation games for the purpose of regulatory impact assessment.

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