Discerning the stars: characterising the myriad of sustainability assessment methods

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    A myriad of sustainability assessment (SA) frameworks, metrics and tools have been developed. As the TempAg network aims to deliver resilient agricultural production systems, a.o. by comparing their sustainability performance, the first step was to identify currently used SAs and discern their characteristics. Therefore, from an SA inventory, integrated sustainability assess-ment (ISA) methods (assessing multiple dimensions) for agriculture were selected for an in-depth survey with the ISA methods’ developers or users. A large variation in ISAs was found. Strictly reductionist representations were rare, but holistic ones ranged from less than ten to hundreds of indicators. Next to farm development, other (combinations of) purposes were found; a wide range of end-users; a spectrum of data collection, processing and scoring methods; and variate methods to combine indicators into an ISA. Stakeholder involvement in ISA development was found common practice, especially in the early phases, defining the sustainability framework and selecting the indicators. This first pilot activity shed some light on the complexity of ISA methods and the variability in their characteristics. Further research may reveal how they can be sufficiently enhanced to futureproof agricultural decision making.
    Oorspronkelijke taalEngels
    Aantal pagina’s14
    PublicatiestatusGepubliceerd - jul.-2016
    Evenement12th European International Farming Systems Association Symposium: Social and technological transformation of farming systems: Diverging and converging pathways - Harper Adams University, Newport, Shropshire, Verenigd Koninkrijk
    Duur: 12-jul.-201615-jul.-2016


    Symposium12th European International Farming Systems Association Symposium
    Verkorte titel12th European IFSA symposium
    Land/RegioVerenigd Koninkrijk
    StadNewport, Shropshire
    Internet adres


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