A multi-actor multi-criteria scenario analysis of regional sustainable resource policy

Aliye Ahu Akgün, Eveline van Leeuwen, Peter Nijkamp
2012 Ecological Economics  
The increasing scarcity of natural resources (e.g. forests, energy, agricultural land) prompts the need to develop effective strategies for sustainable development at regional levels with a view to balancing the interests of different groups of actors or stakeholders. This study aims to address the stakeholders' multifaceted viewpoints on future sustainable development, mainly at regional scales. To this end, five experimental test cases -in the form of five different case studies in Europe
more » ... analysed, so as to be able to investigate sustainability, as well as its main stakeholders, in different situations, and to encapsulate different sustainability approaches and different needs for sustainable development. A 'pentagon model' is used to represent systematically five critical aspects of sustainability. In order to analyse the trade-offs and synergies between different objectives (in particular, the viewpoints of different stakeholders) on sustainable development, four distinct scenarios -Competitiveness; Continuity; Capacity; and Coherence -reflecting distinct and relevant images of sustainability are presented. The relative merits of these four scenarios are then empirically assessed by means of a particular type of multicriteria analysis, namely, Regime Analysis. The analysis is carried out by ranking different attributes of sustainable development, i.e. social, economic, ecological, institutional and physical, from the perspective of different stakeholders (distinguished, inter alia, according to gender, education level, occupation, institutional, and geographical background). This study maps out the different attributes of sustainability in relation to the viewpoints of different stakeholders in all five case-study areas. We find that the most preferred sustainable future is the Coherence scenario, in which a combination of ecological and social aspects is the most important determinant.
doi:10.1016/j.ecolecon.2012.02.026 fatcat:6f5fhyrtdfdxlhzqbclawrprii