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Authors:Anna Jonßon: Department of Thematic Studies, Linköping University, Sweden
Johanna Alkan Olßon: LUCSUS, Lund University, Sweden
Publication title:Participatory Modelling: (how) can computer generated information affect the ”room of action” of local stakeholders?
Conference:Kulturstudier i Sverige. Nationell forskarkonferens
Publication type: Abstract and Fulltext
Article No.:041
Abstract:Today; the demand for increased public participation in the management of natural resources and implementation of remedies to come to grips with environmental problems within the environmental field is growing. Increased participation is held to contribute to better; more legitimate and cost-efficient solutions. Local actors’ knowledge about the functioning of ecosystems may also increase the quality of proposed solutions. At the same time the use of highly aggregated computer generated scientific information as a basis for decisions and negotiations both at national and international levels has become more and more recurrent. The computer models enable the integration of large quantities of information about environmental causes and effects at various scales in time and space.

This paper discusses what may happen; when computer generated information meets local water stakeholders. The combination of remedies that computer based models suggest are for example not always possible to implement within the limited “room of action” in which local stakeholders are forced to act. May a process of participatory modelling make model generated information more adapted to this “room of action”? Or the other way around is a participatory modelling process a way to affect the size and character of this room? And can this type of method/process be a way forward for creating a critically intervening research?

The paper builds on experiences from two Swedish case studies; one recently terminated; and one just started. Both cases focus on the problem of eutrophication and local stakeholders include farmers; municipal environmental officers; outdoor interests and representatives from other point- and diffuse sources of nitrogen and phosphorous. Results show that this type of participatory modelling may be a good tool for creating a general consensus around the causes; type and possible solutions of certain types of environmental problems. Simultaneously; computer generated information is not always adapted to the complex network of institutions that define the room of action of local stakeholders.

No. of pages:20
Series:Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings
ISSN (print):1650-3686
ISSN (online):1650-3740
Publisher:Linköping University Electronic Press; Linköpings universitet

Anna Jonßon, Johanna Alkan Olßon (2005). Participatory Modelling: (how) can computer generated information affect the ”room of action” of local stakeholders?, Kulturstudier i Sverige. Nationell forskarkonferens;article=041 (accessed 3/31/2015)