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Publication - Research Publication

Engaging and empowering communities and stakeholders in rural land use and land management in Scotland

Published: 29 Jul 2016
Part of:
Farming and rural, Research
ISBN:
9781786522603

Report on how best to assist rural communities to engage with decisions on land use and land management.

136 page PDF

1.5MB

136 page PDF

1.5MB

Contents
Engaging and empowering communities and stakeholders in rural land use and land management in Scotland
Annex 6 Engagement methods and approaches

136 page PDF

1.5MB

Annex 6 Engagement methods and approaches

Table 17: Engagement methods and approaches

Roots of the method/ approach

Methods and approaches

Main level of influence

Focus

Strengths

Environmental management

  • Stakeholder Dialogue / Designed Consensus Building

Consultation through to Shared Decision Making

Helping people find what they agree about and find mutually acceptable and implementable ways forward.

Desire to provide an alternative to conflict and the inaction arising from deadlock.

Strengths

  • Fosters mutual understanding and creativity
  • Has a high regard and respect for stakeholders
  • The process is designed to help people move from positional to principled negotiation
  • Harnesses different types of knowledge
  • Optimises social capital

Weaknesses

  • Dependent on the participants and negotiations in the room so not predictive or mathematical (like some e.g. multi-criteria analysis)
  • Requires skilled person to design and facilitate and be accepted as able to be impartial
  • Public Dialogue

Consultation

Desire to engage citizens with no prior knowledge to dialogue with scientists to influence management or policy

Strengths

  • Representative of the views of wider society
  • Deliberative

Weakness

  • Resource intense because on top of usual dialogue costs, citizens are paid an allowance to attend.
  • Can take too long - there may be insufficient time from when a policy maker is aware of a contentious issue to the point they have to make policy decisions

Although deliberative outputs usually inform rather than make science or policy decisions

Human geography and economics.

  • Multicriteria analysis
  • Valuation methods

Information gathering

Seeking to understand what people value

Strengths:

  • Uses the language of maths, economics and science and appears to be transparent, repeatable and provide strong "evidence"

Weaknesses:

  • Based on economic models of human behaviour ( i.e. that humans are 'rational optimiser')
  • Results are fed into computer models to generate answers and this can disassociate stakeholders from the outcome
  • The technical language that surrounds the methods
  • The primary focus is information gathering and processing rather then principled negotiation

Planning and developers

  • Planning for Real
  • Participatory Mapping
  • Participatory GIS

Information Gathering and Consultation

Understanding how people want space to be planned and designed

Strengths:

  • Very visual and engaging

Weaknesses:

  • Usually used to provide information for decision makers - although approaches to Participatory GIS (Geographic Information Systems) are developing to be more consensual
  • Understanding and using maps is a form of literacy and so this can be a barrier to use
  • Drop in Meetings

Information giving and gathering

Enabling people to contribute their views at a time convenient to them

Strengths

  • Individuals attend events at a time suiting them
  • Large numbers can contribute

Weaknesses

  • No deliberation with others
  • Can create so much comment that it enables organisations to 'cherry pick' the comments that resonate with their ideas

International Development

  • Participatory Rural Appraisal ( PRA)

Information gathering and consultation

A way of capturing information from local people in developing countries. Often uses techniques that don't depend on literacy.

Strengths

  • Creative ways of gathering diverse forms of knowledge

Weaknesses

  • Tends to be used for very local decision making or as a way of gathering information for authorities to make decisions

Community Development and Education

  • Participatory art projects
  • Fun days
  • Open days

Information giving and gathering

Education, community cohesion, connection to a project or area.

Strengths

  • Can involve very high numbers of people

Weaknesses

  • Not deliberative
  • Does not provide power or influence

Marketing

  • Focus groups and social surveys

Information gathering

Capture information to inform decisions

Strengths

  • Surveys can capture high numbers and breadth of perspectives
  • Focus group recruitment methods are designed to find individuals who reflect demographics and have no prior knowledge so more reflective of the wider populace

Weaknesses

  • Way of gathering information but not making decisions, building social capital or creating momentum for action

Legal

  • Alternative Dispute Resolution ( ADR)

Decision Making

ADR enables in depth negotiation between a few parties

Strengths

  • Mediated process resulting in acceptable outcome for parties involved

Weaknesses

  • Requires a trained mediator
  • Can only involve a few parties
  • Citizens Juries

Information gathering

Citizens Jury involves 12 people in deliberating in depth based on hearing and cross-examining expert witnesses. Used to inform policy makers

Strengths

  • In depth deliberation
  • Citizens recruited from broader society

Weaknesses

  • Only 12 people are involved
  • Can be time consuming
  • Despite being very deliberative the jury's verdict functions only as information for policy makers

Business /organisational development

  • Appreciative Enquiry

Consultation or shared decision making

A focus is on appreciating and building on strengths and what is working already (instead of on problems)

Strengths

  • Generates enthusiasm and energy for change
  • Positive and forward focused

Weaknesses

  • The culture of science and environmental management can react against the full AI method as a too touchy/feely in style.
  • Open Space

Decision Making

Enabling a group to develop their own agenda and priorities

Strengths

  • Very open and dynamic
  • Can involve large numbers of people

Weaknesses

  • Can be too open for some environmental contexts where there are environmental and statutory constraints
  • Can be vulnerable to dominant characters taking over the agenda or individual discussion sessions

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