Structured Decision Making is about the creative and messy process of making environmental management decisions. The approach described here is Structured Decision Making, a distinctly pragmatic label given to ways for helping individuals and groups think through tough choices where science is uncertain, stakeholders are often emotional, and actions involve difficult tradeoffs. This is the everyday reality of environmental management, yet many important decisions currently are made on an ad hoc basis which lacks a solid value-based foundation, ignores key information, and results in selection of an inferior alternative.
Making progress – in a way that is rigorous, inclusive, defensible and transparent – requires combining analytical methods drawn from the decision sciences, behavioural economics and applied ecology with deliberative insights drawn from cognitive psychology, facilitation and negotiation. The authors review key methods and discuss case-study examples drawn from their experience in communities, boardrooms, and stakeholder meetings. Their goal is to lay out a compelling roadmap that will change how you think about making environmental decisions.
1. Structured Decision Making as an Approach to Environmental Management
2. Conceptual Foundations of Structured Decision Making
3. Decision Sketching
4. Objectives: Figuring Out What Matters
5. Performance Measures
7. Creating Alternatives
9. Making Tough Trade-Offs
11. Reality Check: Implementing a Structured Decision Making Process