Bridging the gap between qualitative problem structuring and quantitative decision analysis in forestry

bridging the gapProject description

Today's forestry is challenged by demands relating to global, regional, and local as well as public, institutional, and private perspectives. In upcoming decades, society will need sophisticated decision support procedures for e.g. multi-objective land use planning, collaborative negotiation, conflict management, biodiversity maintenance, and preparing and implementing forest and environmental policies.

In recent years, however, it has more and more been acknowledged that the most crucial parts in decision support are related to problem definition: in a messy situation with conflicting goals of different stakeholders, the relevant criteria and decision alternatives may be hard to find. This calls for sophisticated problem structuring methods. On the other hand, rigorous multi-attribute decision support tools may help people to determine inevitable trade-offs between important criteria, and thus help to understand or learn about the decision problem.

The aim of this project is to enhance the compatibility of various decision support methods and to develop their applicability in solving the problem encountered in a particular situation. We will develop new, theoretically argued problem definition and decision calculation procedures that function seamlessly together. In this project our aim is to tie soft (qualitative) problem structuring methods together with hard (quantitative) decision analysis methods. By the results of this project, both the efficiency of single phases of forestry decision making and the quality of whole decision process will be improved, as well as the transparency and controllability and, thus, acceptability of decision processes and resulting decisions.

More information

Director of the project
Prof. Pekka Leskinen, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE),

Published 2013-04-24 at 10:24, updated 2013-04-24 at 10:24