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This book is the second collection of systematic case studies describing national environmental policies in 17 countries in terms of capacity building (see Appen­ dix). The OECD defines environmental capacity building as "a society's ability to identify and solve environmental problems. " While various institutions, including UNEP, FAO, World Bank and OECD, have hitherto used the terms environmental capacity and capacity building almost exclusively with reference to developing countries, we have extended the concepts to industrialized countries, as well. The first collection, edited by Martin Janicke, Helge Joergens (both Free University Berlin) and Helmut Weidner (Social Science Research Center Berlin), was pub­ lished in 1997 under the title "National Environmental Policies - A Comparative Study of Capacity-Building" (Berlin, etc. : Springer Verlag). It included 13 studies of countries. As in the first volume, chapter I presents the conceptual framework underlying the national case studies. It is a slightly shorter version of the corresponding chap­ ter in volume I. The design of all case studies in the two volumes is largely con­ gruent with this conceptual framework. Although the various sections of the stud­ ies do not always have identical titles and subtitles, the central elements of the capacity-building approach have been applied in all cases.

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