Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (FSC)

FSC studies and reports

Stakeholder Involvement in Decision Making: A Short Guide to Issues, Approaches and Resources (2015)
Radioactive waste management is embedded in broader societal issues such as the environment, risk management, energy, health policy and sustainability. In all these fields, there is an increasing demand for public involvement and engagement. This 2015 update of Stakeholder Involvement Techniques: Short Guide and Annotated Bibliography, assists practitioners and non-specialists by outlining the steps and issues associated with stakeholder involvement in decision making and by facilitating access to useful online resources (handbooks, toolboxes and case studies). The updated guide has been considerably enriched with experiences since 2004 and includes extensive references to the literature. It is published alongside the release of an online annotated bibliography that will be updated regularly.

Fostering a Durable Relationship between a Waste Management Facility and its Host Community (2015)
In the field of long-term radioactive waste management, repository projects last from decades to centuries. Such projects will inevitably have an effect on the host community from the planning stage to the end of construction and beyond. The key to a long-lasting and positive relationship between a facility and its host community is ensuring that solutions are reached together throughout the entire process. The sustainability of radioactive waste management solutions can potentially be achieved through design and implementation of a facility that provides added cultural and amenity value, as well as economic opportunities, to the local community.

Stakeholder Involvement in Decision Making: Annotated Bibliography (2015)
In order to support practitioners in both public and private organisations, and in any socio-technical fields, the RWMC Forum on Stakeholder Confidence published Stakeholder Involvement in Decision Making: Annotated Bibliography (OECD/NEA, 2015). The Forum on Stakeholder Confidence does not support one specific methodology over another, but intends to raise awareness and facilitate access to useful online resources (handbooks, toolboxes and case studies). This bibliography complements the Stakeholder Involvement in Decision Making: Short Guide to Issues, Techniques and Resources (OECD/NEA, forthcoming). To keep pace with the fast-growing experience and literature of stakeholder engagement, the Forum plans to periodically update this annotated bibliography.

Local communities' expectations and demands on monitoring and the preservation of records, knowledge and memory of a deep geological repository (2013)
The present study report explores the role, needs and expectations of local communities regarding monitoring and RK&M preservation of radioactive waste management (RWM) facilities, in particular deep geological repositories. As a contribution to the RK&M project of the NEA and as part of its own programme of work, the FSC performed two short surveys (11 countries) and conducted interviews with a variety of stakeholders (seven countries) in 2012-13. This report will interest those responsible for the safety of future repositories, local communities who may consider hosting them, and scholars and historians of the governance of radioactive waste management.

Stakeholder Confidence in Radioactive Waste Management: An Annotated Glossary of Key Terms (2013)
This annotated glossary is a review of concepts central to societal decision making about radioactive waste management. Glossary entries include: confidence and trust; dialogue; local community; local partnership; ownership of a societal project vs. acceptance; retrievability of waste; reversibility of decisions; safety and stakeholder confidence; siting; stakeholder; stepwise approach to decision making; transparency. This document records the evolution in understanding that has taken place in the FSC group as it worked with these concepts over time. It is intended to serve as a good reference handbook for future texts regarding societal aspects of radioactive waste management and its governance, and as a useful resource for specialists and non-specialists alike.

Reflections on Siting Approaches for Radioactive Waste Facilities: Synthesizing Principles Based on International Learning (2012)
This report synthesizes principles for socially responsive siting of radioactive waste management facilities that have emerged from over a decade of learning by the FSC. It is based largely on the FSC presentation (Sept 2010) to the US "Blue Ribbon Committee on America’s Nuclear Future". The FSC then asked Hank C. Jenkins-Smith, a professor of political science and Associate Director of the Center for Applied Social Research at the University of Oklahoma, to review and augment this learning.

Clarity, Conflict and Pragmatism: Challenges in Defining a 'Willing Host Community' (2012)
This essay focuses on the concepts of "willing potential host" and "willing host" communities in the context of radioactive waste management facility siting. Should criteria for defining these be specified as a formal component of the siting process? Professor Hank C. Jenkins-Smith draws on political science references and on examples (principally from the United States) to examine complexities associated with such definitions.

Partnering for Long-Term Management of Radioactive Waste (2010)
Evolution and Current Practice in Thirteen Countries
The search for sites for radioactive waste management facilities has a history of conflicts and delays. Affected communities have often objected that their concerns and interests were not addressed. In response, institutions have progressively turned away from the traditional "decide, announce and defend" model, and are learning to"engage, interact and co-operate". This shift has fostered the emergence of partnerships between the proponent of the facility and the potential host community. Working in partnership with potential host communities enables pertinent issues and concerns to be raised and addressed, and creates an opportunity for developing a relationship of mutual understanding and mutual learning, as well as for developing solutions that will add value to the host community and region. The report examines partnership arrangements and history in 13 national programmes. It shows that key elements of the partnership approach are being incorporated into waste management strategies, leading increasingly to positive outcomes.

More than Just Concrete Realities: The Symbolic Dimension of Radioactive Waste Management (2010)
Key concepts of radioactive waste management (e.g. safety, risk, reversibility, retrievability) carry different meanings for the technical community and for non-technical stakeholders. Similarly, socio-economic concepts (e.g. community, landscape, benefit packages) are interpreted differently by different societal groups. Opinions and attitudes are not simply a faithful reflection of decision making, actual events and communicated messages; perceptions and interpretations of events and objects also play a role. The report presents key issues and examples in order to build awareness of the importance of symbols and symbolism in communicating about perceptions and interpretations. It adds to the recognition that dialogue amongst stakeholders is shaped by dimensions of meaning that reach beyond dictionary definitions and are grounded in tradition and social conventions. A better understanding of these less obvious or conspicuous realities should help find additional ways of creating constructive relationships amongst stakeholders.

Stakeholder Involvement in Decommissioning Nuclear Facilities (2007)
International Lessons Learnt
Significant numbers of nuclear facilities will need to be decommissioned in the coming decades. In this context, NEA member countries are placing increasing emphasis on the involvement of stakeholders in the associated decision procedures. This study reviews decommissioning experience with a view to identifying stakeholder concerns and best practice in addressing them. The lessons learnt about the end of the facility life cycle can also contribute to better foresight in siting and building new facilities.

Fostering a Durable Relationship between a Waste Management Facility and its Host Community (2007)
Adding Value through Design and Process
Att skapa en hållbar relation mellan en avfallsanläggning för hantering av radioaktivt avfall och dess värdkommun Mervärde genom design och process
Any long-term radioactive waste management project is likely to last decades to centuries. It requires a physical site and will impact in a great variety of ways on the surrounding community over that whole period. The societal durability of an agreed solution is essential to success.  This report identifies a number of design elements (including functional, cultural and physical features) that favour a durable relationship between the facility and its host community by improving prospects for quality of life across generations.

Cultural and Structural Changes in Radioactive Waste Management Organisations - Lessons Learnt (2007)
Radioactive waste management organisations need to adapt to societal changes and societal demands. This study reviews trends in NEA member countries. The report identifies the triggers of change, difficulties in adapting to change and ways to overcome these difficulties. A mixed approach based on theoretical analysis and empirical research is used.  It is observed that in most cases the triggers of changes are crises and the dominant direction of change is towards a more open system. The recent, increased concern with security issues poses limits to the adoption of an open system model. Adapting to the expectations of the public is frequently accompanied by efforts to strengthen cohesion among employees. The overarching condition for successful transition is the commitment of senior management.

Stakeholder Issues and Involvement in Decommissioning Nuclear Facilities (2007)
Lessons Learnt from WPDD and FSC Activities and Documentation
Significant numbers of nuclear power plants will reach the end of their operating lives in the coming decades or may be shut down for economic or other reasons. NEA member countries are giving increasing emphasis to the involvement of stakeholders in the decision-making procedures associated with this process. This study reviews decommissioning and dismantling experience in order to identify stakeholder concerns and best practices in addressing them. The lessons learnt about the end of the facility life cycle can contribute to better foresight in siting and building new facilities. Both the NEA Working Party on Decommissioning and Dismantling (WPDD) and the NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (FSC) contributed to, and endorsed, this review.

Learning and Adapting to Societal Requirements for Radioactive Waste Management (2004)
Key Findings and Experience of the Forum on Stakeholder Confidence
This report presents a synthesis of the key findings and experience of the NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence regarding the governance of long-term radioactive waste management. Most of the main findings are of relevance to all public policy-making processes, not only to radioactive waste management. In this sense, the report reads as a primer on the concrete governance challenges facing complex, collective decision making.

Stepwise Approach to Decision Making for Long-term Radioactive Waste Management (2004)
Experience, Issues and Guiding Principles
This review of stepwise decision making for long-term RWM pinpoints its current status, highlights its societal dimension and identifies implementation issues from both the point of view of social research and RWM practitioners. There is convergence between these two perspectives, and general guiding principles and action goals are proposed as a basis for further discussion and development of the stepwise decision-making concept.

Stakeholder Involvement Techniques: Short Guide and Annotated Bibliography (2004)
Stakeholder involvement, dialogue and deliberation can improve the quality and the sustainability of policy decisions. There  is a need to let non-specialists form an idea of what is involved in choosing a technique as well as find their way to pertinent documents. This document offers a short guide to stakeholder involvement techniques and their selection. It includes an annotated bibliography pointing to easily accessible handbooks and is intended for any person or organisation considering stakeholder involvement in decision-making.

Public Information, Consultation and Involvement in Radioactive Waste Management (2003)
An International Overview of Approaches and Experiences (pdf, 687 kb)

The Regulator's Evolving Role and Image in Radioactive Waste Management (2003)
Lessons Learnt within the NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (pdf, 143 kb)

Vari, A. The mental models approach to risk research: A radioactive waste management perspective
Secretariat Paper (pdf format, 159 kb).

Last reviewed: 27 October 2016