Findings of more than 25 Years of Research in Environmental Decision
The research group of Prof. Raimo P. Hämäläinen develops new approaches
and computer tools to support environmental policy processes. The starting
point is systems approach with decision analytic value modelling. Over the
years the main goal has been to find new ways to improve communication,
learning and joint problem solving in participatory policy processes and
to move from conflict management to sustainable collaboration.
Today we emphasize the systems intelligent participation process which
integrates our findings and innovations over the years. The development of
our research and some basic findings are listed below:
- In environmental policy, decision analytic structuring and
prioritization help to create an overall picture and a shared common
terminology to allow fruitful collaboration and discussions. This approach
is well received by stakeholders and policy makers. Facts and values can
be separated and dealt with in an integrative decision analysis setting.
The approaches can range from interactive decision analysis
interviews to decision conferences and facilitated workshops. See
- Different decision analytic methods for attribute weighting can be used successfully.
There are risks of procedural and behavioural biases which can be
overcome. See references.
- In working with stakeholder interests, our preference
programming approach with interval modeling integrates all the
participants' priorities into a common model and helps to start a
collaborative process. Such an approach lowers the risk of anchoring onto
individual goals with a potential of growing into a conflict. See
- Computer and web support is very important and makes
e-participation possible but is not enough without a focus on the
participation process. See references.
- Participation methods and processes can become creative and
collaborative by systems intelligence and thus produce sustainable
decisions. In a systems intelligent approach the participation process is seen as a system where one understands that the ways and timings of communication and interaction have an effect on the process and on the framing of the issue by different stakeholders. See references.
Environmental decision making and participation at SAL