Session 2: Methods of Participatory Modeling

9:30 AM - 10:50 AM | Room 61 (Lower level)

Linking Values and Goals to Model Outputs and Decision Points in Collaborative Geodesign

Bryan Runck, Carissa Slotterback, Nicholas Jordan, David Pitt, David Mulla, and Len Kne
University of Minnesota

A key challenge in collaborative modeling is linking diverse stakeholders' values and goals to model outputs, decision points, and action pathways. University of Minnesota experts and diverse local stakeholders are engaged in a process where knowledge and value sharing is paired with the co-design of a spatial decision support (i.e. geodesign) tool. By pairing stakeholder knowledge and value sharing with tool evaluation, this work intends to increase the legitimacy, saliency, and credibility of the multiple forms of knowing presented within the decision support system, and simultaneously empower stakeholders to identify key decision points and action pathways.

View presentation

Defining Purpose, Processes, Partnerships, and Products in Participatory Socio-Environmental Modeling

Alison Singer and Steven Gray
Michigan State University
Alexey Voinov
University of Twente

Modeling is such a basic part of human reasoning and communication that the formal practice of environmental modeling has been extended recently to include non-scientists, especially as a way to understand complex socio-environmental dynamics and to understand the societal implications for model-based scenarios. Although the field of participatory modeling (PM) has grown in recent years, we believe that a lack of standardized reporting may limit reproducibility, innovation, and advancement in the field. We suggest a four-dimensional protocol which includes reporting on dimensions of: (1) the purpose, or why a particular PM approach was selected; (2) the process, or how the PM process was designed; (3) the partnerships, or who was included; and (4) the products, or what was produced as a result of these efforts.  Using four case studies, we demonstrate how this approach may standardize knowledge in the field and lead to innovation as well as reproducibility and provide a way for new hypotheses to be identified and tested in the growing field of PM.

View presentation

Typologies and Tradeoffs: A Standardized Approach to Creating Participatory Fuzzy Cognitive Maps

Alexander Metzger
University of Massachusetts Boston
Dr. Steven Gray
Michigan State University

Fuzzy cognitive mapping (FCM) is gaining traction in participatory modeling and environmental planning as a way to integrate local expert and scientific knowledge and better understand complex social-ecological systems dynamics. Although FCM's popularity continues to increase, the literature is still in the early stages of creating norms and standard procedures for study design. In this presentation, we review participatory applications of FCM that focus on individual “mental models” and integrating diverse community knowledge for decision-making. We use this review to link study purpose to appropriate model-building processes, and present case studies that illustrate analytical and conceptual trade-offs of various approaches.

View presentation