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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    Impacts of farmer field schools in the human, social, natural and financial domain : a qualitative review
    Berg, Henk van den; Phillips, Suzanne ; Dicke, Marcel ; Fredrix, Marjon - \ 2020
    Food Security (2020). - ISSN 1876-4517
    Adult education - Farmer field school - Impact assessment - Sustainable rural livelihoods

    The Farmer Field School (FFS) is a widely used method seeking to educate farmers to adapt agricultural decisions to diverse and variable field conditions. Out of 218 screened studies, 65 were selected to review the impact of the FFS. An analytical framework was developed with effects (outputs, outcomes and impacts) arranged according to the human, social, natural and financial domains. Impacts on non-participants of the FFS were addressed as peripheral effects. The FFS demonstrated its potential to enhance human, social, natural and financial capital of rural communities. Human capital was built in the form of critical thinking, innovation, confidence, and quality of life. Effects on social capital included mutual trust, bonding, collective action, networking, and emancipation. Natural capital was enhanced through improvements in field practices, food production, agricultural diversification, and food security. Financial capital was enhanced through increased income and profits, savings and loans schemes, with a potential to reduce poverty. The available body of evidence was unbalanced across the capital domains, providing high coverage of the natural domain but low coverage of the human, social and financial domains. In-depth case studies are needed to elucidate the interactions between livelihood assets, and the influences of the policy, institutional and external environment, in order to adjust FFS interventions aiming to optimize their impacts. Considering the positive effects the FFS can have on rural livelihoods, the FFS has potential to contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. However, quality assurance of the FFS and a balanced evaluation across the capital domains require attention.

    A systematic review of indicators to assess the sustainability of road infrastructure projects
    Suprayoga, Gede B. ; Bakker, Martha ; Witte, Patrick ; Spit, Tejo - \ 2020
    European Transport Research Review 12 (2020)1. - ISSN 1867-0717
    Cluster analysis - Cost-benefit analysis - Impact assessment - Intergenerational equity - Sustainability criteria

    Background: This study aims to examine to what extent sustainability has been incorporated into assessments of road infrastructure projects. It identifies promising approaches that include indicators reflecting core sustainability criteria, determines criteria that were insufficiently covered as indicators, and develops an integrated indicator set covering all criteria. Methods: A systematic review was performed to obtain all related papers/reports in two academic databases: Scopus and Web of Sciences. The indicators extracted from papers/reports were first coded, then evaluated by using quantitative and qualitative content analysis. Results: The project appraisal methods for decision-making is found to be a promising approach, covering more extensive criteria than others. Two criteria – namely adaptation and precaution and intergenerational equity – were hardly ever adopted as indicators. Ten main groups of indicators were extracted to construct an integrated set incorporating all core criteria. Conclusions: Some criteria appear to have become mainstream, while others deserve attention. The safest choice is to combine methods/tools or to adopt the integrated set developed for exhaustive criteria inclusion.

    A review of European models to assess the sustainability performance of livestock production systems
    Linden, Aart van der; Olde, Evelien M. de; Mostert, Pim F. ; Boer, Imke J.M. de - \ 2020
    Agricultural Systems 182 (2020). - ISSN 0308-521X
    Availability - Bio-economic model - Impact assessment - Linear programming - Sustainability indicators

    A large variety of models has been developed to explore the multidimensional, and sometimes conflicting, sustainability consequences of innovations and policies for European livestock farms. Implementation of innovations and policies generally results in both synergies and trade-offs between the environmental, economic, and social dimension of sustainability, and among sustainability themes within these dimensions. An overview of the specific sustainability themes addressed by livestock models is lacking, which hinders the further development of models to evaluate a wide array of sustainability dimensions and themes. The aim of this review, therefore, is to provide an overview of European livestock models that can be used to explore synergies and trade-offs among sustainability themes. This systematic literature review yielded 215 European livestock models at the animal level, herd or flock level and farm level. Models were mainly developed in Western Europe, and may have, therefore, a reduced accuracy when applied to other regions than Western Europe. Most models cannot assess a wide array of synergies and trade-offs among sustainability dimensions and themes, as only 33% covered all three sustainability dimensions. Models addressed four sustainability themes on average. Social themes are often lacking in models and additional efforts are needed to develop more integrative models by adapting and extending existing models, especially for monogastric animals. Adaptation and extension of existing models is facilitated by improving the availability of livestock models, increasing the percentage of livestock models published open source, collaborating on the development of joint and generic models and by improving descriptions of the programming languages and programs used and the stakeholders involved. This model review can be used to identify which models or combinations of models are best suited to explore the sustainability consequences of innovations and policies for livestock farms in Europe.

    Helping stakeholders select and apply appraisal tools to mitigate soil threats : Researchers’ experiences from across Europe
    Okpara, Uche T. ; Fleskens, Luuk ; Stringer, Lindsay C. ; Hessel, Rudi ; Bachmann, Felicitas ; Daliakopoulos, Ioannis ; Berglund, Kerstin ; Blanco Velazquez, Francisco Jose ; Ferro, Nicola Dal ; Keizer, Jacob ; Kohnova, Silvia ; Lemann, Tatenda ; Quinn, Claire ; Schwilch, Gudrun ; Siebielec, Grzegorz ; Skaalsveen, Kamilla ; Tibbett, Mark ; Zoumides, Christos - \ 2020
    Journal of Environmental Management 257 (2020). - ISSN 0301-4797
    Decision-support tools - Europe - Impact assessment - Soil degradation - Soil improvement - Stakeholder engagement

    Soil improvement measures need to be ecologically credible, socially acceptable and economically affordable if they are to enter widespread use. However, in real world decision contexts not all measures can sufficiently meet these criteria. As such, developing, selecting and using appropriate tools to support more systematic appraisal of soil improvement measures in different decision-making contexts represents an important challenge. Tools differ in their aims, ranging from those focused on appraising issues of cost-effectiveness, wider ecosystem services impacts and adoption barriers/opportunities, to those seeking to foster participatory engagement and social learning. Despite the growing complexity of the decision-support tool landscape, comprehensive guidance for selecting tools that are best suited to appraise soil improvement measures, as well as those well-adapted to enable participatory deployment, has generally been lacking. We address this gap using the experience and survey data from an EU-funded project (RECARE: Preventing and REmediating degradation of soils in Europe through land CARE). RECARE applied different socio-cultural, biophysical and monetary appraisal tools to assess the costs, benefits and adoption of soil improvement measures across Europe. We focused on these appraisal tools and evaluated their performance against three broad attributes that gauge their differences and suitability for widespread deployment to aid stakeholder decision making in soil management. Data were collected using an online questionnaire administered to RECARE researchers. Although some tools worked better than others across case studies, the information collated was used to provide guiding strategies for choosing appropriate tools, considering resources and data availability, characterisation of uncertainty, and the purpose for which a specific soil improvement measure is being developed or promoted. This paper provides insights to others working in practical soil improvement contexts as to why getting the tools right matters. It demonstrates how use of the right tools can add value to decision-making in ameliorating soil threats, supporting the sustainable management of the services that our soil ecosystems provide.

    Socio-economic analysis in REACH restriction dossiers for chemicals management: A critical review
    Gabbert, Silke ; Hilber, Isabel - \ 2020
    Ambio 49 (2020). - ISSN 0044-7447 - p. 1394 - 1411.
    Impact assessment - REACH - Regulation - Restriction of chemicals - Risk management - Socio-economic analysis

    This paper offers a critical review of socio-economic analysis (SEA) in Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) restriction dossiers. We examine the conceptual setup of SEA and identify the methods used for impact assessment. Moreover, we analyse the outcomes of quantitative impact assessment across restriction dossiers and substance groups. We find that impact assessment has largely focused on economic and health impacts. Environmental, social, wider economic and distributional impacts have either been evaluated qualitatively or not at all. While this can be explained by the specific scope of the proposed restriction or by lacking data, we also observe a lack of approaches for environmental and health impact assessment. This underlines the need to develop integrated methods that transform information about chemical effects and risks into impacts and, ultimately, into benefits and damages. Furthermore, to strengthen the function of SEA as decision-support tool in REACH restriction procedures, a comparative SEA of at least two alternative restriction options should be the default.

    Life cycle assessment of food products
    Fraval, Simon ; Middelaar, Corina E. van; Ridoutt, Brad G. ; Opio, Carolyn - \ 2019
    In: Encyclopedia of Food Security and Sustainability / Ferranti, P., Berry, E.M., Anderson, J.R., Elsevier - ISBN 9780128126875 - p. 488 - 496.
    Acidification - Agriculture - Biodiversity - Crops - Eutrophication - Food security - Global warming - Impact assessment - Livestock - Packaging - Product environmental footprinting - Science communication - Sustainability - Water scarcity

    Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) provides a rigorous framework to assess a product against a range of environmental impact categories from the ‘cradle to the grave’. LCA sets out a clear method for analysis, including goal and scope definition, Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) development, Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) and interpretation. This article provides an overview of each of these LCA phases, with a specific focus on food and agriculture. We provide a summary of LCAs applied to food and agriculture, as well as insights into LCA’s function in providing a more food secure future.

    Vulnerability and adaptation options to climate change for rural livelihoods – A country-wide analysis for Uganda
    Wichern, Jannike ; Descheemaeker, Katrien ; Giller, Ken E. ; Ebanyat, Peter ; Taulya, Godfrey ; Wijk, Mark T. van - \ 2019
    Agricultural Systems 176 (2019). - ISSN 0308-521X
    Crop suitability - East Africa - Household food security - Impact assessment - Multi-level

    Rural households in sub-Saharan Africa earn a substantial part of their living from rain-fed smallholder agriculture, which is highly sensitive to climate change. There is a growing number of multi-level assessments on impacts and adaptation options for African smallholder systems under climate change, yet few studies translate impacts at the individual crop level to vulnerability at the household level, at which other livelihood activities need to be considered. Further, these assessments often use representative household types rather than considering the diversity of households for the identification of larger-scale patterns at sub-national and national levels. We developed a framework that combines crop suitability maps with a household food availability analysis to quantify household vulnerability to climate-related impacts on crop production and effects of adaptation options. The framework was tested for Uganda, identifying four hotspots of household vulnerability across the country. Hotspots were visually identified as areas with a relatively high concentration of vulnerable households, experiencing a decline in household crop suitability. About 30% of the households in the hotspots in (central) southwest were vulnerable to a combination of 3 °C temperature increase and 10% rainfall decline through declining suitability for several key crops (including highland banana, cassava, maize and sorghum). In contrast only 10% of the households in West Nile and central northern Uganda were negatively affected, and these were mainly affected by declining suitability of common beans. Households that depended on common beans and lived at lower elevations in West Nile and central north were vulnerable to a 2 to 3 °C temperature increase, while households located at higher elevations (above 1100–2000 m.a.s.l. depending on the crop) benefited from such an increase. Options for adaptation to increasing temperatures were most beneficial in northern Uganda, while drought-related adaptation options were more beneficial in the southwest. This framework provides a basis for decision makers who need information on where the vulnerable households are, what crops drive the vulnerability at household level and which intervention efforts are most beneficial in which regions.

    Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA) in fisheries : Implementation in EU fishing regions
    Malvarosa, Loretta ; Murillas, Arantza ; Lehuta, Sigrid ; Nielsen, J.R. ; Macher, Claire ; Goti, Leyre ; Motova, Arina ; Doering, Ralf ; Haraldson, Gunnar ; Accadia, Paolo ; Hamon, Katell G. ; Bastardie, Francois ; Maravelias, Christos D. ; Mardle, Simon ; Thøgersen, Thomas - \ 2019
    Marine Policy 101 (2019). - ISSN 0308-597X - p. 63 - 79.
    Acceptability - Coherence - Effectiveness - Fishery management - Impact assessment - Sustainability

    An Impact Assessment (IA) is a process aimed at structuring and supporting the development of policies. Besides the fact that IA assumes different features when applied to different sectors, really it should help policy makers in evaluating the contribution to the fisheries sustainability of new regulations. The recent improvements and development around the IA methodologies go more and more toward the concept of a Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA). The evolution of IA in the fishery sector has followed the general and increasing need in having a more and more integrated type of analysis, focusing on the three dimensions of sustainability (environmental, economic and social). This paper synthesizes the methodology developed under the EU FP7 SOCIOEC project,1 whose main objective was the application of the most recent EU guidelines on IA to the current (and future) EU fishery management. The result is an integrated approach taking into account the main pillars of sustainability and a strong stakeholders’ involvement. A clear step-by-step procedure based on both qualitative and quantitative type of analyses has been defined, the last step being the “rating” phase, an essential step in a SIA, that provides the possibility to assess the results of different policy options (allowing policy makers to select the most appropriate one) in terms of acceptability, effectiveness, coherence and efficiency. The overall methodology has been tested on different EU regions, fisheries and management measures.

    A spatial framework for ex-ante impact assessment of agricultural technologies
    Andrade, José F. ; Rattalino Edreira, Juan I. ; Farrow, Andrew ; Loon, Marloes P. van; Craufurd, Peter Q. ; Rurinda, Jairos ; Zingore, Shamie ; Chamberlin, Jordan ; Claessens, Lieven ; Adewopo, Julius ; Ittersum, Martin K. van; Cassman, Kenneth G. ; Grassini, Patricio - \ 2019
    Global Food Security 20 (2019). - ISSN 2211-9124 - p. 72 - 81.
    Agricultural R&D - Impact assessment - Scaling out - Spatial framework

    Traditional agricultural research and extension relies on replicated field experiments, on-farm trials, and demonstration plots to evaluate and adapt agronomic technologies that aim to increase productivity, reduce risk, and protect the environment for a given biophysical and socio-economic context. To date, these efforts lack a generic and robust spatial framework for ex-ante assessment that: (i) provides strategic insight to guide decisions about the number and location of testing sites, (ii) define the target domain for scaling-out a given technology or technology package, and (iii) estimate potential impact from widespread adoption of the technology(ies) being evaluated. In this study, we developed a data-rich spatial framework to guide agricultural research and development (AR&D) prioritization and to perform ex-ante impact assessment. The framework uses “technology extrapolation domains”, which delineate regions with similar climate and soil type combined with other biophysical and socio-economic factors that influence technology adoption. We provide proof of concept for the framework using a maize agronomy project in three sub-Saharan Africa countries (Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Tanzania) as a case study. We used maize area and rural population coverage as indicators to estimate potential project impact in each country. The project conducted 496 nutrient omission trials located at both on-farm and research station sites across these three countries. Reallocation of test sites towards domains with a larger proportion of national maize area could increase coverage of maize area by 79–134% and of rural population by 14–33% in Nigeria and Ethiopia. This study represents a first step in developing a generic, transparent, and scientifically robust framework to estimate ex-ante impact of AR&D programs that aim to increase food production and reduce poverty and hunger.

    Marine microplastic: Preparation of relevant test materials for laboratory assessment of ecosystem impacts
    Kühn, Susanne ; Oyen, Albert Van; Booth, Andy M. ; Meijboom, André ; Franeker, Jan A. Van - \ 2018
    Chemosphere 213 (2018). - ISSN 0045-6535 - p. 103 - 113.
    Reference material - Microplastic - Characterisation - Cryo-milling - Impact assessment - Marine debris
    Studies investigating the effects of plastic litter on marine biota have almost exclusively utilised pristine plastic materials that are homogeneous in polymer type, size, shape and chemical composition. This is particularly the case for microplastics (<5 mm), where collecting sufficient quantities from the marineenvironment for use in laboratory impacts studies is simply not feasible. Weathered plastics collected from the marine environment show considerable physical and chemical differences to pristine and postproduction consumer plastics. For this study, macroplastic litter was collected on a Dutch beach andcryo-milled to create a microplastic mixture for environmental impact assessments. The sample composition followed proportions of marine plastic litter types observed in an earlier large beach cleanup. Polymer composition of the sample was assessed by infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) and differentialscanning calorimetry analysis (DSC). The particle size distribution of the cryo-milled microplastics showed that particles 0.5e2.0mm represented 68% of mass, but smaller sizes (<2 mm) strongly dominated numerically. Inductively coupled plasma spectroscopy (ICP-MS and ICP-OES) analysis of the microplastic mixture revealed a broad range of metals and other elements (e.g. Al, Cd, Cr, Fe, Mg, Pb, S and Zn), representing common inorganic additives used as colorants, fillers and stabilisers. GC-MS analysis identified a broad range of organic plasticisers, stabilisers, antioxidants and flame retardants. Comparison of different analytical approaches showed that creation of a homogeneous microplastic mixture is possible, representing a first step in closing the gap between laboratory studies with pristine materials and realistic scenarios with weathered microplastic.
    Reforming the research policy and impact culture in the CGIAR : Integrating science and systemic capacity development
    Leeuwis, Cees ; Klerkx, Laurens ; Schut, Marc - \ 2018
    Global Food Security 16 (2018). - ISSN 2211-9124 - p. 17 - 21.
    CGIAR reform - Funding policy - Impact assessment - Research policy

    This paper argues that the CGIAR -through its CGIAR Research Programmes-is struggling to fulfil its international mandate of conducting strategic research that contributes to agricultural development and global food security. Ongoing reforms have resulted in a situation where the CGIAR is assessed as if it were a development organisation. This leads the CGIAR to raise unrealistic expectations regarding the development impacts of the science conducted, resulting in ever growing distrust between the Centres and the donor community. Moreover, its short-term funding cycle and current mode of safeguarding scientific quality are not conducive to doing strategic and potentially transformative research. The paper proposes changes in the CGIAR impact culture, driven by a shift in policies that govern the everyday implementation and assessment of research. In line with this, we suggest that the best way to combine the international 'science' and 'development' mandates is through scientific capacity development of staff belonging to national research and innovation systems. This simultaneously requires major changes in the time-horizon of donor funding, and in how research programmes are selected and led. One sentence abstract: The CGIAR should not be managed and assessed as a development organisation, and requires a longer-term horizon in its funding and governance arrangements.

    The WULCA consensus characterization model for water scarcity footprints : assessing impacts of water consumption based on available water remaining (AWARE)
    Boulay, Anne Marie ; Bare, Jane ; Benini, Lorenzo ; Berger, Markus ; Lathuillière, Michael J. ; Manzardo, Alessandro ; Margni, Manuele ; Motoshita, Masaharu ; Núñez, Montserrat ; Pastor, Amandine Valerie ; Ridoutt, Bradley ; Oki, Taikan ; Worbe, Sebastien ; Pfister, Stephan - \ 2018
    The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 23 (2018)2. - ISSN 0948-3349 - p. 368 - 378.
    Impact assessment - LCIA - Life cycle assessment - UNEP-SETAC life cycle initiative - Water consumption - Water footprint - Water stress - Water use - WULCA

    Purpose: Life cycle assessment (LCA) has been used to assess freshwater-related impacts according to a new water footprint framework formalized in the ISO 14046 standard. To date, no consensus-based approach exists for applying this standard and results are not always comparable when different scarcity or stress indicators are used for characterization of impacts. This paper presents the outcome of a 2-year consensus building process by the Water Use in Life Cycle Assessment (WULCA), a working group of the UNEP-SETAC Life Cycle Initiative, on a water scarcity midpoint method for use in LCA and for water scarcity footprint assessments. Methods: In the previous work, the question to be answered was identified and different expert workshops around the world led to three different proposals. After eliminating one proposal showing low relevance for the question to be answered, the remaining two were evaluated against four criteria: stakeholder acceptance, robustness with closed basins, main normative choice, and physical meaning. Results and discussion: The recommended method, AWARE, is based on the quantification of the relative available water remaining per area once the demand of humans and aquatic ecosystems has been met, answering the question “What is the potential to deprive another user (human or ecosystem) when consuming water in this area?” The resulting characterization factor (CF) ranges between 0.1 and 100 and can be used to calculate water scarcity footprints as defined in the ISO standard. Conclusions: After 8 years of development on water use impact assessment methods, and 2 years of consensus building, this method represents the state of the art of the current knowledge on how to assess potential impacts from water use in LCA, assessing both human and ecosystem users’ potential deprivation, at the midpoint level, and provides a consensus-based methodology for the calculation of a water scarcity footprint as per ISO 14046.

    A cross-scale impact assessment of European nature protection policies under contrasting future socio-economic pathways
    Lotze-Campen, Hermann ; Verburg, Peter H. ; Popp, Alexander ; Lindner, Marcus ; Verkerk, Pieter J. ; Moiseyev, Alexander ; Schrammeijer, Elizabeth ; Helming, John ; Tabeau, Andrzej ; Schulp, Catharina J.E. ; Zanden, Emma H. van der; Lavalle, Carlo ; E Silva, Filipe Batista ; Walz, Ariane ; Bodirsky, Benjamin - \ 2018
    Regional Environmental Change 18 (2018)3. - ISSN 1436-3798 - p. 751 - 762.
    Cross-scale interaction - Impact assessment - Integrated modelling - Land use change - Nature protection
    Protection of natural or semi-natural ecosystems is an important part of societal strategies for maintaining biodiversity, ecosystem services, and achieving overall sustainable development. The assessment of multiple emerging land use trade-offs is complicated by the fact that land use changes occur and have consequences at local, regional, and even global scale. Outcomes also depend on the underlying socio-economic trends. We apply a coupled, multi-scale modelling system to assess an increase in nature protection areas as a key policy option in the European Union (EU). The main goal of the analysis is to understand the interactions between policy-induced land use changes across different scales and sectors under two contrasting future socio-economic pathways. We demonstrate how complementary insights into land system change can be gained by coupling land use models for agriculture, forestry, and urban areas for Europe, in connection with other world regions. The simulated policy case of nature protection shows how the allocation of a certain share of total available land to newly protected areas, with specific management restrictions imposed, may have a range of impacts on different land-based sectors until the year 2040. Agricultural land in Europe is slightly reduced, which is partly compensated for by higher management intensity. As a consequence of higher costs, total calorie supply per capita is reduced within the EU. While wood harvest is projected to decrease, carbon sequestration rates increase in European forests. At the same time, imports of industrial roundwood from other world regions are expected to increase. Some of the aggregate effects of nature protection have very different implications at the local to regional scale in different parts of Europe. Due to nature protection measures, agricultural production is shifted from more productive land in Europe to on average less productive land in other parts of the world. This increases, at the global level, the allocation of land resources for agriculture, leading to a decrease in tropical forest areas, reduced carbon stocks, and higher greenhouse gas emissions outside of Europe. The integrated modelling framework provides a method to assess the land use effects of a single policy option while accounting for the trade-offs between locations, and between regional, European, and global scales.
    Report PLATFORM Workshop "Monitoring, Evaluation and Impact Assessment of P2P Networks and Projects", 8-9 June 2017, Copenhagen
    Mogensen, P. ; Gøtke, N. ; Kuzniar-van der Zee, Brenda - \ 2017
    H2020 Platform of bioeconomy ERA-NET Actions (PLATFORM) - 28 p.
    PLATFORM - Bioeconomy - ERA-NET - Impact assessment - Monitoring - Evaluation - p2p partnerships - P2P
    Assessing local and regional economic impacts of climatic extremes and feasibility of adaptation measures in Dutch arable farming systems
    Diogo, V. ; Reidsma, P. ; Schaap, B. ; Andree, B.P.J. ; Koomen, E. - \ 2017
    Agricultural Systems 157 (2017). - ISSN 0308-521X - p. 216 - 229.
    Adaptation - Arable farming - Climate change - Extreme weather events - Impact assessment - Spatial analysis
    We propose a method that combines local productivity factors, economic factors, crop-specific sensitivity to climatic extremes, and future climate change scenarios, to assess potential impacts of extreme weather events on agricultural production systems. Our assessment is spatially explicit and uses discounted time series of cash flows taking into account expected future impacts on yield and crop quality, to estimate changes in the expected net present value (NPV) of agricultural systems. We assess the economic feasibility of a portfolio of adaptation measures by considering their initial investments, annual costs, and effectiveness in reducing crop damage. We apply the method to investigate potential economic impacts of extreme weather events in arable farming systems in the Netherlands around 2050. We find that the expected increase in extreme weather events frequency can severely affect future productivity potential. Particularly, heat waves, warm winters, and high intensity rainfall are expected to substantially undermine the future economic viability of Dutch arable farming systems. The results indicate considerable differences between regions in terms of vulnerability to climatic extremes: while some regions are severely impacted by all climatic extremes, other regions consistently demonstrate high resilience to increases in extreme event frequency. The findings are robust to a wide range of scenarios and suggest that the interactions between economic factors and management practices (particularly, crop specialisation) are decisive drivers of the economic viability of agricultural systems under more frequent climatic extremes. However, the exact magnitude of the impacts remains highly uncertain, as we do not consider endogenous interactions in market conditions resulting from climate change and socio-economic developments. Nevertheless, crop adaptation measures should be regarded as no-regret strategies, since they alleviate both economic impacts and uncertainty around impact magnitude. The proposed method provides insights in region-specific threats and opportunities that are relevant for stakeholders and policy-makers. This information improves communication on main climate risks at the local and regional levels and contributes to prioritising adaptation strategies.
    A knowledge brokerage approach for assessing the impacts of the setting up young farmers policy measure in Greece
    Bournaris, Th. ; Moulogianni, Ch. ; Arampatzis, S. ; Kiomourtzi, F. ; Wascher, D.M. ; Manos, B. - \ 2016
    Environmental Impact Assessment Review 57 (2016). - ISSN 0195-9255 - p. 159 - 166.
    Common agricultural policy - Impact assessment - Knowledge brokerage - Rural development programme measures - Science policy interface

    This study explores Knowledge Brokerage (KB) aspects of an ex-post Impact Assessment (IA) for the Rural Development Programme (RDP) measure of setting up young farmers, under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), at the regional level in Northern Greece. The measure supports the entry of young farmers in agriculture by moving land from older to younger farmers. The aim of the study was to test a set of KB tools for improving the interaction between researchers and policy makers. Our analysis mainly focused on a suite of IA Support Modules to guide practitioners, and on a technical tool kit, a web-based contextualisation platform, to support the IA of the specific test case. Offering a structured approach towards IA, both the Support Modules and LIAISE-KIT allow framing the context, organisation, scheduling and method selection in the light of KB objectives. The evaluation of how IA Support Modules influence the Science Policy Interface (SPI), in the case of the ex-post assessment, demonstrated the high relevance of KB activities for facilitating the interaction between researchers and regional policy makers. The assessment bridges the gap between knowledge producers developing scientific output to be applied in a specific context, and knowledge users, who want clear messages regarding the policy challenges they face. Other conclusions include the need for specific guidelines and training for knowledge users, especially with regard to the use of tools. According to our findings, a consequent application of KB activities is a crucial pre-condition for successfully implementing IAs in future RDP measures.

    Harbour porpoise movement strategy affects cumulative number of animals acoustically exposed to underwater explosions
    Aarts, Geert ; Benda-Beckmann, Alexander M. Von; Lucke, K. ; Özkan Sertlek, H. ; Bemmelen, Rob Van; Geelhoed, Steve C.V. ; Brasseur, Sophie ; Scheidat, Meike ; Lam, Frans Peter A. ; Slabbekoorn, Hans ; Kirkwood, Roger - \ 2016
    Marine Ecology Progress Series 557 (2016). - ISSN 0171-8630 - p. 261 - 275.
    Acoustics - Anthropogenic sound - Cumulative effects - Impact assessment - Individual-based model - Marine mammals - Population consequences of disturbance - Species distribution

    Anthropogenic sound in the marine environment can have negative consequences for marine fauna. Since most sound sources are intermittent or continuous, estimating how many individuals are exposed over time remains challenging, as this depends on the animals' mobility. Here we explored how animal movement influences how many, and how often, animals are impacted by sound. In a dedicated study, we estimated how different movement strategies affect the number of individual harbour porpoises Phocoena phocoena receiving temporary or permanent hearing loss due to underwater detonations of recovered explosives (mostly WWII aerial bombs). Geo-statistical distribution models were fitted to data from 4 marine mammal aerial surveys and used to simulate the distribution and movement of porpoises. Based on derived dose-response thresholds for temporary (TTS) or permanent threshold shifts (PTS), we estimated the number of animals affected in a single year. When individuals were free-roaming, an estimated 1200 and 24 000 unique individuals would suffer PTS and TTS, respectively. This equates to respectively 0.50 and 10% of the estimated North Sea population. In contrast, when porpoises remained in a local area, fewer animals would receive PTS and TTS (1100 [0.47%] and 15 000 [6.5%], respectively), but more individuals would be subjected to repeated exposures. Because most anthropogenic sound-producing activities operate continuously or intermittently, snapshot distribution estimates alone tend to underestimate the number of individuals exposed, particularly for mobile species. Hence, an understanding of animal movement is needed to estimate the impact of underwater sound or other human disturbance.

    QUICKScan as a quick and participatory methodology for problem identification and scoping in policy processes
    Verweij, Peter ; Janssen, Sander ; Braat, Leon ; Eupen, Michiel van; Pérez Soba, Marta ; Winograd, Manuel ; Winter, Wim de; Cormont, Anouk - \ 2016
    Environmental Science & Policy 66 (2016). - ISSN 1462-9011 - p. 47 - 61.
    Decision making - Environmental policy - Impact assessment - Participatory - Spatial planning - Trade-off

    Policy making is required in cases in which a public good needs to be either maintained or created, and private or civil initiatives cannot deal alone with this. Policy making thus starts with a phase of problem identification and determining whether there is a problem that needs to be dealt with. Rapidly evolving contexts exert influence on policy makers who have to take decisions much faster and more accurately than in the past, also facing greater complexity. There is a need for a method that lowers the lead time of the exploratory phase of the policy cycle. At the same time the method should create a joint understanding of the most important interactions. This paper proposes QUICKScan, a method, process and spatially explicit tool, to jointly scope policy problems in a participatory setting, investigate the most important interactions and feedbacks and assesses the state of knowledge and data of relevance to the problem. QUICKScan uses strongly moderated participatory workshops bringing together a wide range of stakeholders relevant to the policy issue. These moderated workshops jointly build an expert system in a spatially explicit tool using functionality of bayesian belief networks, python programming, simple map algebra and knowledge matrices, with a strong focus on visualization of results. QUICKScan has been applied in 70 different applications in a range of different policy contexts, stakeholders and physical locations. Through these applications participants were able to internalize the knowledge that was usually handed to them in briefs and reports, to develop a joint understanding of the main interactions and their link to impacts and to develop a problem statement and solution space in a reduced lead time. Ultimately, QUICKScan demonstrates another role of science, not solely as a knowledge production, but also facilitating the knowledge consumption.

    Decentralised innovation systems and poverty reduction : Experimental evidence from Central Africa
    Pamuk, Haki ; Bulte, Erwin ; Adekunle, Adewale ; Diagne, Aliou - \ 2015
    European Review of Agricultural Economics 42 (2015)1. - ISSN 0165-1587 - p. 99 - 127.
    Adoption of agricultural innovations - Bottom-up versus top-down - Impact assessment - Innovation systems - Participatory development - Poverty

    We use experimental data to investigate whether a decentralised approach to promoting innovation in central African agriculture outperforms conventional extension approaches. Our main result is that this decentralised approach, based on so-called innovation platforms, is effective in reducing poverty - more effective than conventional extension approaches. However, we also document considerable heterogeneity in terms of platform performance.

    Knowledge brokerage for impact assessment of land use scenarios in inner Mongolia, China : Extending and testing the FoPIA approach
    König, Hannes J. ; Podhora, Aranka ; Zhen, Lin ; Helming, Katharina ; Yan, Huimin ; Du, Bingzhen ; Wübbeke, Jost ; Wang, Chao ; Klinger, Julie ; Chen, Cheng ; Uthes, Sandra - \ 2015
    Sustainability 7 (2015)5. - ISSN 2071-1050 - p. 5027 - 5049.
    Expert knowledge - Impact assessment - Knowledge brokerage - Landscape functioning - Policy support - Sustainable development

    While land serves numerous societal functions and contributes to sustainable development, it is often unclear how these functions are affected by political decisions and common drivers of land use change, such as economic development, climate change and demographic change. This study evaluates alternative land use scenarios in reference to a rural region of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region (China), where various processes and decisions have historically triggered unsustainable development. The scientifically tested "Framework for Participatory Impact Assessment (FoPIA)" method is developed further to address specific features of the case study region, and its function as a knowledge-brokerage (KB) tool is evaluated. Three scenarios are developed and analysed in expert workshops. Abstract: While land serves numerous societal functions and contributes to sustainable development, it is often unclear how these functions are affected by political decisions and common drivers of land use change, such as economic development, climate change and demographic change. This study evaluates alternative land use scenarios in reference to a rural region of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region (China), where various processes and decisions have historically triggered unsustainable development. The scientifically tested "Framework for Participatory Impact Assessment (FoPIA)" method is developed further to address specific features of the case study region, and its function as a knowledge-brokerage (KB) tool is evaluated. Three scenarios are developed and analysed in expert workshops.

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