Inderscience Publishers

An administrative innovation approach to environmental committee development

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Environmental protection has become an important public concern. Major threats to continued prosperity, and perhaps existence, are widely recognised, nationally and internationally. Resolution has not proven simple given the competing demands on the environment and the seeming human difficulty of making current sacrifices to achieve future welfare. This paper focuses on a growing approach to governance, namely environmental committees. It views environmental committees as administrative innovations that are adopted and evolve. The experience gained from another governance mechanism, financial audit committees, is used in order examine issues. The focus is on the characteristics of the development stages specifically addressing (1) structure and composition, (2) orientation and support, (3) reporting and measurement, and (4) responsibility. Environmental committees are found to change and evolve. As they change, the structure promotes improvements in the effectiveness of the governance mechanisms.

Keywords: administrative innovation, audit committees, boards of directors, environmental committees, governance, environmental protection, environmental pollution

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