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Sustainability 2015, 7(8), 9823-9845; doi:10.3390/su7089823

Participatory Environmental Valuation: A Comparative Analysis of Four Case Studies

Clersé—Centre Lillois d'Etudes et de Recherches Sociologiques et Economiques, Université des Sciences et Technologies de Lille, Université de Lille 1, Bâtiment SH2, Villeneuve d'Ascq Cedex 59655, France
CENSE—Center for Environmental and Sustainability Research, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, DCEA FCT-UNL, Caparica 2829-516, Portugal
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Olivier Petit and Géraldine Froger
Received: 28 February 2015 / Revised: 16 July 2015 / Accepted: 20 July 2015 / Published: 23 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecosystem Services and Institutional Dynamics)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [705 KB, uploaded 31 July 2015]


The valuation of multiple ecosystem services requires the design of valuation processes able to integrate different dimensions of value and to cope with complexity. Following the “value-articulating institution” framework, we note that three core problems arise: the cognitive, normative and composition problems. Combining valuation methods, such as contingent valuation and multicriteria analysis, with participatory and deliberative techniques is increasingly promoted as a means to address those fundamental problems. However, the quality and legitimacy of the valuation process then becomes dependent on how participation is framed. We note that numerous issues need to be taken into account, such as the roles assumed by participants, the differences in contribution among participants, the level of participatory impact and the level of democratization of the decision-making process. This paper proposes a detailed qualitative analysis of four case studies, each of them having implemented a specific valuation method in a participatory process. We analyze how those cases were handled in each of the dimensions considered and offer our conclusions about the added values and remaining challenges related to participatory environmental valuation. View Full-Text
Keywords: environmental valuation; ecosystem services; value-articulating institutions; participation; deliberation; decision-making environmental valuation; ecosystem services; value-articulating institutions; participation; deliberation; decision-making
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Carnoye, L.; Lopes, R. Participatory Environmental Valuation: A Comparative Analysis of Four Case Studies. Sustainability 2015, 7, 9823-9845.

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