Editorial featured papers on environmental decisions
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Our society is facing serious environmental challenges related to climate change, pollution, diminishing resources, and biodiversity loss. Such problems are often ill-defined and are characterized by high uncertainty. Environmental decisions have strong impacts on society and demand clear and transparent trade-offs across values and priorities of stakeholder groups. This Feature Issue on Environmental Decisions includes papers focused on important environmental applications approached through various disciplinary backgrounds. The papers highlight advanced–often interdisciplinary–methodological approaches and include the perspectives of different stakeholders in the process of environmental decision-making. A wide range of methods are explored, ranging from a comprehensive review (for sustainable transport by Marleau Donais et al.) to an opinion paper proposing the use of Records of Engagement and Decision-making (RoED; by Cockerill et al.). Stakeholder engagement and preference elicitation required the development of new aggregation models for Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA; by Reichert et al.). The integration of Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA) with MCDA was found to be necessary in practice (by Liu et al.; Marleau Donais et al.). MCDA was extended to include the spatial dimension by integrating Geographic Information Systems (GIS; by Guay et al.; Schito et al.). The importance of considering the resilience of systems to better respond to and recover from unpredictable risks was emphasized (by Leyerer et al.; Mustajoki and Marttunen). These papers demonstrate the richness of approaches to environmental decision-making. Environmental issues offer ample exciting research opportunities to a broader scientific community. We encourage the readers of this Feature Issue—and of EJDP—to engage in environmental decision-making projects to support emerging societal needs.
KeywordsCost-Benefit Analysis Decision Support Systems Environmental decision-making Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis Risk assessment Sustainability
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