Jasper Meekes , pp. 66. DSN/School of Planning and Media Design, 2012.
Research in the field of European spatial planning often focuses on non-binding policies from the EU, whether it be documents such as the Territorial Agenda or policies on agriculture and (territorial) cohesion. This thesis looks at how binding legislation from the EU can influence spatial planning, even though there is no formal competence in this field. Swedish comprehensive plans are studied to analyse how a number of environmental directives are dealt with. These directives are seen to set restrictions, change the planning process and – in the case of the Water Framework Directive – change the structures of government. In Sweden this last type of influence may lead to an unexpected type of multi-level governance in a country without regional spatial planning. Perhaps the sectoral directives can be said to create an invisible European planning system.