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Selected Publication:

Wolfslehner, B; Vacik, H.
(2011): Mapping indicator models: From intuitive problem structuring to quantified decision-making in sustainable forest management
ECOL INDIC. 2011; 11(2): 274-283. FullText FullText_BOKU

Most commonly, sustainability indicator sets presented as lists do not take into account interactions among indicators in a systematic manner. Vice versa, existing environmental indicator systems do not provide a formalized approach for problem structuring and quantitative decision support. In this paper, techniques for considering indicator relationships are highlighted and a coupled approach between a qualitative and a quantitative method is analysed. Cognitive mapping (CM) is used for structuring indicators and three different causal maps are derived based on established sustainability concepts: (a) criteria and indicators (C&I hierarchy), (b) indicator network, and (c) Driving Force-Pressure-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) system. These maps are transferred to the Analytic Network Process (ANP) to allow their application in multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA). In an application example. Pan-European indicators for sustainable forest management (SFM) are utilized in an ANP-based assessment. The effects of the model structure on the overall evaluation result are demonstrated by means of three reporting periods on Austrian forestry. In a comparative analysis of CM and ANP it is tested whether their measures of indicator significance do correspond. Both centrality in CM and single limited priorities in ANP have been reported to identify key indicators that play an important role in networks. We found out that the correspondence between CM and ANP is the stronger the more rigidly cause-effect relationships are interpreted, which is the case for the DPSIR system of SFM indicators. It is demonstrated that using indicator sets without consideration of the indicator interactions will cause shortcomings for evaluation and assessment procedures in SFM. Given strict and consistent definition of causal indicator relationships, a coupled use of CM and ANP is recommendable for both enhancing the process of problem structuring as well as supporting preference-based evaluation of decision alternatives. (C) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Authors BOKU Wien:
Vacik Harald
Wolfslehner Bernhard
BOKU Gendermonitor:

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Cognitive mapping (CM)
Analytic Network Process (ANP)
Sustainable forest management (SFM)

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