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Challenges 2013, 4(1), 34-55; doi:10.3390/challe4010034
Article

A Concept for Testing Decision Support Tools in Participatory Processes Applied to the ToSIA Tool

1,* , 1
 and 2
Received: 14 January 2013; in revised form: 18 March 2013 / Accepted: 24 March 2013 / Published: 17 April 2013
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Abstract: ToSIA (Tool for Sustainability Impact Assessment) offers a transparent and consistent methodological framework to assess impacts of changes (technological, policy, management, etc.) in the forest-based sector. This tool is able to facilitate the decision making process within and between diverse groups of stakeholders (e.g., forest managers and policymakers) as it provides a neutral, transparent and data-driven platform for stakeholder interaction and communication. To test these capabilities of ToSIA, a practical approach to test if a decision support system is suitable for participatory processes was developed based on a set of evaluation criteria for participatory processes. ToSIA’s performance was assessed and discussed in different categories against a selection of criteria for successful participatory processes: six criteria were fulfilled by ToSIA, in nine, ToSIA is potentially helpful, in two, criteria ToSIA has no influence, and for three criteria, no experiences exist until now. As a result, ToSIA’s conceptual suitability as a participatory decision support system was confirmed for two interlinked roles: as a decision support system to assess alternative scenarios, and as a communication platform for stakeholder interaction.
Keywords: ToSIA (Tool for Sustainability Impact Assessment); pDSS (participatory Decision Support System); decision defence; stakeholder interaction; participatory process; science-policy interface ToSIA (Tool for Sustainability Impact Assessment); pDSS (participatory Decision Support System); decision defence; stakeholder interaction; participatory process; science-policy interface
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.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Tuomasjukka, D.; Lindner, M.; Edwards, D. A Concept for Testing Decision Support Tools in Participatory Processes Applied to the ToSIA Tool. Challenges 2013, 4, 34-55.

AMA Style

Tuomasjukka D, Lindner M, Edwards D. A Concept for Testing Decision Support Tools in Participatory Processes Applied to the ToSIA Tool. Challenges. 2013; 4(1):34-55.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tuomasjukka, Diana; Lindner, Marcus; Edwards, David. 2013. "A Concept for Testing Decision Support Tools in Participatory Processes Applied to the ToSIA Tool." Challenges 4, no. 1: 34-55.


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