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Environment Magazine September/October 2008


July-August 2016

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Participatory Scenario Planning: From Scenario ‘Stakeholders’ to Scenario ‘Owners’

Scenario planning can—if done well—contribute to sustainability science realizing two defining qualities: first, to boldly face future social–ecological uncertainties, and second, to do so in a way that enables real participation.1 Indeed, scenario planning is, by definition and design, a tool for working with uncertainty. However, making scenario exercises sincerely participatory is a choice. Involving a wide range of participants in such exercises—especially those most affected by the particular case of social–ecological uncertainty and the vulnerability it entails—is a critical factor in the usefulness of the scenarios they produce. Scenario planning holds much potential for enabling more sustainable development pathways

Rebecca Freeth edited the Future of Food scenarios in her capacity as a consultant with Reos Partners and is currently a PhD candidate, Leuphana University, Lüneburg, Germany.

Scott Drimie is Director of the Southern Africa Food Lab and Associate Professor Extraordinary, Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.       

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