Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Environmental decision support systems (EDSS) development - Challenges and best practices
McIntosh, B.S. ; Ascough, J.C. ; Twery, M. ; Chew, J. ; Elmahdi, A. ; Haase, D. ; Harou, J.J. ; Hepting, D. ; Cuddy, S. ; Jakeman, A.J. ; Chen, S. ; Kassahun, A. ; Lautenbach, S. ; Matthews, K. ; Merritt, W. ; Quinn, N.W.T. ; Rodriguez-Roda, I. ; Sieber, S. ; Stavenga, M. ; Sulis, A. ; Ticehurst, J. ; Volk, M. ; Wrobel, M. ; Delden, H. ; El-Sawah, S. ; Rizzoli, A. ; Voinov, A. - \ 2011
Environmental Modelling & Software 26 (2011)12. - ISSN 1364-8152 - p. 1389 - 1402.
river-basin management - ecosystem management - resource management - united-states - integration - models - tools - information - policy - dss
Despite the perceived value of DSS in informing environmental and natural resource management, DSS tools often fail to be adopted by intended end users. By drawing together the experience of a global group of EDSS developers, we have identified and assessed key challenges in EDSS development and offer recommendations to resolve them. Challenges related to engaging end users in EDSS development emphasise the need for a participatory process that embraces end users and stakeholders throughout the design and development process. Adoption challenges concerned with individual and organisational capacities to use EDSS and the match between EDSS and organisational goals can be overcome through the use of an internal champion to promote the EDSS at different levels of a target organisation; coordinate and build capacity within the organisation, and; ensure that developers maintain focus on developing EDSS which are relatively easy and inexpensive to use and update (and which are perceived as such by the target users). Significant challenges exist in relation to ensuring EDSS longevity and financial sustainability. Such business challenges may be met through planning and design that considers the long-term costs of training, support, and maintenance; revenue generation and licensing by instituting processes which support communication and interactions; and by employing software technology which enables easy model expansion and re use to gain an economy of scale and reduce development costs. A final group of perhaps more problematic challenges relate to how the success of EDSS ought to be evaluated. Whilst success can be framed relatively easily in terms of interactions with end users, difficulties of definition and measurability emerge in relation to the extent to which EDSS achieve intended outcomes. To tackle the challenges described, the authors provide a set of best practice recommendations concerned with promoting design for ease of use, design for usefulness, establishing trust and credibility, promoting EDSS acceptance, and starting simple and small in functionality terms. Following these recommendations should enhance the achievement of successful EDSS adoption, but more importantly, help facilitate the achievement of desirable social and environmental outcomes.
Chapter three Bridging the gaps between design and use: Developing tools to support environmental management and policy
McIntosh, B.S. ; Giupponi, C. ; Voinov, A.A. ; Smith, C. ; Matthews, K.B. ; Monticino, M. ; Kolkman, M.J. ; Crossman, N. ; Ittersum, M.K. van; Haase, D. ; Haase, A. ; Mysiak, J. ; Groot, J.C.J. ; Sieber, S. ; Verweij, P. ; Quinn, N. ; Waeger, P. ; Gaber, N. ; Hepting, D. ; Scholten, H. ; Sulis, A. ; Delden, H. van; Gaddis, E. ; Assaf, H. - \ 2008
In: Developments in integrated environmental assessment / Jakeman, A.J., Voinov, A.A., Rizzoli, A.E., Chen, S.H., Elsevier (Environmental Modelling, Software and Decision Support Volume 3) - ISBN 9780080568867 - p. 33 - 48.
Integrated assessment models, decision support systems (DSS) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are examples of a growing number of computer-based tools designed to provide decision and information support to people engaged in formulating and implementing environmental policy and management. It is recognised that environmental policy and management users are often not as receptive to using such tools as desired but that little research has been done to uncover and understand the reasons. There is a diverse range of environmental decision and information support tools (DISTs) with uses including organisational and participatory decision support, and scientific research. The different uses and users of DISTs each present particular needs and challenges to the tool developers. The lack of appreciation of the needs of end-users by developers has contributed to the lack of success of many DISTs. Therefore it is important to engage users and other stakeholders in the tool development process to help bridge the gap between design and use. Good practice recommendations for developers to involve users include being clear about the purpose of the tool, working collaboratively with other developers and stakeholders, and building social and scientific credibility
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