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Actors and coalitions

The project is divided in three general arenas: a project-group, with civil servants from the most relevant actors depending on resources and authority, a steering group with commissioners authorized to make decisions from the same organizations, and a surrounding group (klankbordgroup) with other interested actors included by invitation. A wide variety of actors from different levels of scale are included. The surrounding group includes representatives from societal organizations such as nature organizations and inhabitants of the area, who are closely involved with mainly issues relating to planning and the choice of the exact location. Whileas members of the klankbordgroep are actively invited to participate in the design sessions, not all members feel that they can influence the project as much as they would like.

The dominant coalition that has been formed is the integral development coalition, which includes all of the project- and steering group members. This coalition emphasizes the integral character of the development and treats nature development as such – an important if not essential part of the plan. In fact, by making use of nature through building with nature the secondary goals of the plan as a whole can be included.

The opposition coalition is opposed to the project in that it changes the countryside, mainly by the ambition to build housing in this now little populated area. This coalition consists mostly of local action groups, individuals and oppositionary politicians. The coalition is in itself not opposed to building with nature – they are opposed to what building with nature makes possible.

A distinction between more development-oriented and more conservation-oriented actors can be made, where most of the conservation-oriented actors are present in the opposition coalition concerned with maintaining the status quo.

The interaction with the Deltaprogramme is mainly related to future safety norms. We found no evidence that the building with nature philosophy of this specific project resonates in and influences the Deltaprogramme. Mainly because these issues are not of the current concern of the Deltaprogramme, which currently concentrates on water-safety related issues. The Deltaprogramme does realize the impact of a potential raise in IJsselmeer water levels on nature in the surrounding areas.

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