DISCUSS: a methodology to support public participation in cost-benefit analysis
AuthorPaez, D.; Bishop, I. D.; Williamson, I. P.
Source TitleProceedings, Australian Electronic Governance Conference
AffiliationEngineering: Department of Geomatics
Document TypeConference Paper
CitationsPaez, D. and Bishop, I. D. and Williamson, I. P. (2004) DISCUSS: a methodology to support public participation in cost-benefit analysis, in Proceedings, Australian Electronic Governance Conference, Melbourne, Australia.
Access StatusOpen Access
Despite many controversies, cost-benefit analysis (CBA) still been used in many countries as a tool in policy decision processes. More recently, publicparticipation in these CBA processes has become an important issue for governments. However, CBA by itself does not provide a good environmentfor public participation. The major reasons for this are the lack of spatial disaggregation in CBA results; the lack of community understanding of the economic methodologies used to generate these results and the uncertainty included in the technical models used during the process. A methodology based on geographic information system (GIS) is presented here to facilitate greater public participation in CBA. The process generates maps that represent the individual stakeholder perceptions and identification of areas where disagreements occur. This electronic governance tool, called DISCUSS(Decision Information System for Community Understanding of SpatialScenarios), is intended for situations where the government desires to encourage public participation in a decision process after the results from the CBA have been achieved. The main objective of the tool is to help thecommunities and the government in identifying the geographic areas that might require more attention during the discussion of the proposed scenariosfor the policy. DISCUSS and the maps that it produces are being tested in a public participation case study with long-term impacts over a large area of south-eastern Australia.
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