On 15 February 2011, the Department for Regional Development in Northern Ireland and the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government in the Republic of Ireland jointly released the The Spatial Strategies on the Island of Ireland—Framework for Collaboration for public consultation over an 8 week period.
As the press release states: “The consultation document identifies key planning challenges faced by both jurisdictions and discusses the potential for collaboration in spatial planning. It sets out a non-statutory framework for collaboration at different levels within the public sector which should result in mutual benefits”.
The idea of a non-statutory framework for cooperation between the National Spatial Strategy (NSS) and the Regional Development Strategy (RDS) was first introduced in the 2006 ICLRD study, funded by InterTradeIreland (ITI). Since then, we have continued to shine a light on the advantages of the framework through our research, conferences and dialogue with senior policy makers.
The original team members on the ITI-funded study,Spatial Strategies on the Island of Ireland—Development of a Framework for Collaborative Action, included Jim Berry, Brendan Bartley, Alastair Adair, John Driscoll, Caroline Creamer, Neale Blair , Stanley McGreal and Francois Vigier. They are to be thanked for their efforts; as are both Departments for persisting in their own efforts to draft and publish a joint document. This study also set a benchmark for how ICLRD engages senior policy makers and practitioners on a steering committee, in this case chaired by Aidan Gough of ITI.
The deadline for comments on the collaborative framework is 5p.m., Monday 11 April 2011. We encourage you to put together a response; with the relevant documents accessible from the following links.