Since subject to a subsequent review is also

Since 1992, EPR has conducted 70 country reviews, with the majority comprising of reviews of the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development countries, although a growing number of partner countries are participating. The current review cycle examines key environmental trends within any given country, the national policy framework, environmental governance systems, recognition of environmental policies in economic strategy, including through taxation or pricing mechanisms. Additionally, a country under review will be asked to choose two topics of particular importance and local relevance to be comprehensively reviewed. Data collection is done by the EPR Secretariat and uses OECD and external data sources, including environmental statistics provided by OECD Working Party on Environmental Information (WPEI). After the collection of data, a review team visits the reviewed country and engages in meetings with various state and non-state actors. As a general rule, high-level government officials would lead the reviewed countries’ delegations. In addition to providing country-specific recommendations, the peer review discussions highlight lessons learnt from other participating countries that could lead to wider policy adoptions. Final reports are publicly launched at high-profile events and their findings are broadly disseminated among policy makers, civil society organizations and the general public. OECD member states and selected partner countries are all subjected to the review. In addition, UNECE sought OECD’s help in designing an environmental review mechanism for UNECE member countries that are not part of the OECD membership. Each country is reviewed once every 7-8 years and the the third cycle of reviews is currently underway. Progress reports are prepared on a voluntary basis by the reviewed countries. Each country that is subject to a subsequent review is also assessed in terms of implementation of recommendations from the previous review. Such a monitoring and evaluation process on a regional level has inspired some domestic policy reforms, such as the green tax reforms in Denmark and France, as well as the the creation of an Environmental Agency in New Zealand and the Ministry of Environment in Chile. This review mechanism can also promote intersectoral collaboration and motivate policy alignment, especially in countries with nascent environmental administration. Such peer reviews can empower parties under review through informing them, learning and policy development, and by increasing the legitimacy of policies. Indeed, the OECD states that “recommendations resulting from such a review can also help governments win support at home for difficult measures.” The longstanding experience and reputation of the OECD as the pioneer of peer reviewing helps in getting political and public attention and acceptance.