GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT PROJECT: Publications

Home | Overview | Publications | People | Search | Subscribe | Sponsors

 
 

Cash, David W. 2000. "Distributed Assessment Systems: An Emerging Paradigm of Research, Assessment and Decision-making for Environmental Change." Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs (BCSIA) Discussion Paper 2000-06. Cambridge, MA: Environment and Natural Resources Program, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

Full text: PDF version (Download free Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Abstract

Global environmental change is increasingly understood to have causes and consequences which span multiple levels, from the local to the global.  Traditional centralized assessment efforts used to address global change, however, are generally insensitive to the multi-level nature of environmental problems.  These efforts forego an opportunity to engage and inform regional and local researchers and decision-makers, increasingly important players in the science and politics of climate change, biodiversity loss, and other large-scale problems.

In response to this shortcoming, a new paradigm for environmental assessment and management has begun to emerge, paralleling and complementing the centralized committee-and-report approach: distributed research, assessment and management systems.  These integrated networks of research, assessment, and management bridge numerous levels, and include sustained, long-term interactions between scientists, decision-makers, and stakeholders.  This paper identifies such innovative systems in several issue-areas, outlines characteristics that contribute to their success, and argues that, given the increasing local sensitivity to global environmental problems, adoption of such systems are urgently needed.

Keywords: distributed assessment, decision making, science, networks, adaptive assessment and management, scale


Subsequent History

Article published in the Global Environmental Change journal (Abstract)
New Citation: Cash, D. W. 2000. "Distributed Assessment Systems: An Emerging Paradigm of Research, Assessment and Decision-making for Environmental Change." Global Environmental Change 10(4): 241-244.

 

 
Home | Overview | Publications | People | Search | Subscribe | Sponsors
Contact the webmaster with any comments, questions, or problems.
For information about related activities, visit the Science, Environment and Development Group web site.
Copyright © 2006 President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Report copyright infringements.
Last modified: 01 May 2006