Knowledge Platform

Classification of Instruments

A broad variety of policy and planning instruments is available to pursue environmental objectives in (agricultural) land use and landscape management. Those instruments can be classified into three categories: (i) regulations ("sticks"), (ii) market intervention ("carrots") and (iii) information ("sermons") (see Fig. 1). Regulations, steering intrinsic and extrinsic motivations, are formulated to prohibit or restrain unwanted actions and developments through negative sanctions and penalties. They can also be interpreted as authoritative instruments. Allocative market intervention measures are to influence economic decision-making and aim at encouraging actions through (positive or negative) economic incentives, such as rewards, grants, fiscal exemptions or facilitative measures. Information instruments, like communicative, intellectual and moral appeals addressing intrinsic decision-making include persuasion, information and knowledge transfer, but also social non-monetary sanctioning to encourage wanted and discourage unwanted actions.

policy framework
Figure 1. Classification of Policy Instruments.

Further Reading

Healey, P. (2010). Making better Places: The Planning Project in the Twenty-First Century. Palgrave, Basingstoke.

Piorr, A. and Müller, K. (Eds.) 2009. Rural Landscapes and Agricultural Policies in Europe. Springer, Berlin.

Piorr, A.; Ungaro, F.; Ciancaglini, A.; Happe, K.; Sahrbacher, A.; Sattler, C.; Uthes, S.; Zander, P. (2009): Integrated assessment of future CAP policies: land use changes, spatial patterns and targeting. Environmental Science & Policy 12(8), 1122-1136.

Ring, I. & Schroeter-Schlaack, C. (2011). Instrument Mixes for Biodiversity Policies. Policymix Report Issue 02/2011.

Vedung, E. (1998). Policy instruments: Typologies and theories. In: Bemelmans-Videc, M.-L., Rist, R.C. & Vedung, E. (Eds.) Carrots, sticks, and sermons: Policy instruments and their evaluation. Transaction, New Brunswick, pp. 21-58.