Document


Title

Analytical group decision making in natural resources: methodology and application
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): D. L. Schmoldt; D. L. Peterson
Publication Year: 2000

Cataloging Information

Keyword(s):
  • disturbance
  • ecosystem dynamics
  • education
  • fire intensity
  • fire management
  • fire size
  • multiple resource management
  • natural areas management
  • public information
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 37654
Tall Timbers Record Number: 12156
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.

Description

Group decision making is becoming increasingly important in natural resource management and associated scientific applications, because multiple values are treated coincidentally in time and space, multiple resource specialists are needed, and multiple stakeholders must be included in the decision process. Decades of social science research on decision making in groups have provided insights into the impediments to effective group processes and on techniques that can be applied in a group context. Nevertheless, little integration and few applications of these results have occurred in resource management decision processes, where formal groups are integral, either directly or indirectly. A group decision-making methodology is introduced as an effective approach for temporary, formal groups (e.g., workshops). It combines the following three components: (1) brainstorming to generate ideas; (2) the analytic hierarchy process to produce judgments, manage conflict, enable consensus, and plan for implementation; and (3) a discussion template (straw document). Resulting numerical assessments of alternative decision priorities can be analyzed statistically to indicate where group member agreement occurs and where priority values are significantly different. An application of this group process to fire research program development in a workshop setting indicates that the process helps focus group deliberations; mitigates groupthink, nondecision, and social loafing pitfalls; encourages individual interaction; identifies irrational judgments; and provides a large amount of useful quantitative information about group preferences. This approach can help facilitate scientific assessments and other decision-making processes in resource management. © Society of American Foresters, Bethesda, MD. Abstract reproduced by permission.

Online Link(s):
Citation:
Schmoldt, D. L., and D. L. Peterson. 2000. Analytical group decision making in natural resources: methodology and application. Forest Science, v. 46, no. 1, p. 62-75.