A critical investigation of evaluation matrices to inform coastal adaptation and planning decisions at the local scale

Joseph Daron, Darryl Colenbrander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Local governments are under pressure to tackle an increasing spectrum of complex contemporary problems, such as climate change, while ensuring multiple stakeholder interests are incorporated into decision processes. Multi-criteria decision tools can assist, but challenges remain in creating an enabling environment for incorporating and balancing different stakeholder perspectives. Here, we draw on interview data and a sensitivity analysis to investigate the use of an evaluation matrix to guide local coastal adaptation decision-making in South Africa. We adopt a participatory action research framework and find that decision-making is influenced by individual, departmental and institutional values that are not adequately captured in the matrix approach. Our study reveals the compromise between achieving broad stakeholder representation and utilising technical expertise, and that altering matrix assumptions can imply different decision outcomes. Suggestions are made to improve multi-criteria decision approaches to better facilitate integrated coastal management in responding to local coastal adaptation challenges.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Environmental Planning and Management
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2014

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