TitleScenarios and Decisionmaking for Complex Environmental Systems
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsCarpenter, SR, Rissman, AR
Book TitleEnvironmental futures research: experiences, approaches, and opportunities
PublisherU.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station
CityNewtown Square, PA

Scenarios are used for expanding the scope of imaginable outcomes considered by assessments, planning exercises, or research projects on social-ecological systems. We discuss a global case study, the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, and a regional
project for an urbanizing agricultural watershed. Qualitative and quantitative aspects of scenarios are complementary. Scenarios can help address several of the currently recognized challenges of sustainability science.