Main authors: Ana Iglesias, Luis Garrote, David Santillán
iSQAPERiS Editor: Jane Brandt
Source document: Iglesias A., Garrote L., Santillán D. (2020) Report on scenarios of future farm and soil management systems. iSQAPER Project Deliverable 7.3 19 pp


Contents table
1. Stakeholder participation in a multi-actor approach in iSQAPER  
2. The process 
3. Workshop content and participants
4. Workshop conclusions

1. Stakeholder participation in a multi-actor approach in iSQAPER

The multi-actor approach means that knowledge focuses on real problems or opportunities that end users of the iSQAPER knowledge (e.g., farmers, scientists, policy analysists, and others that need a solution) are facing. In the iSQAPER project the multi-actor approach is also included in the structure of the project team, since partners with complementary types of knowledge join forces in the project activities from beginning to end. As a result, "multi-actor approach projects are able to develop innovative solutions which are more ready to be applied in practice and cover real needs. Moreover, those benefiting directly from the results of the projects will be more motivated to use them, because they were involved in generating them. They helped to build the project, bringing in their ideas and views so they feel a co-ownership of the solutions generated”.

This conceptual approach of the multi-stakeholder approach in iSQAPER aims to guide the knowledge needed to achieve the scenario definition and how the how the multi-stakeholders will be involved in the knowledge development.

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Figure 3
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Figure 4
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Figure 5

The key objectives of the approach in iSQAPER – empower, inform, engage and consult – are summarised in Figure 3. The iSQAPER multi-actor process of creating scenarios, links soil health challenges at the farm level and scientific knowledge, aiming to produce knowledge relevant to different actors. The process is summarised in Figure 4.

Timing of the activities are defined in four steps (Figure 5):

  • Step 1: Learning from each other in the project team: Brainstorming to think further about the future scenarios and the different actor/stakeholder groups to co-create a common understanding of future scenarios.
  • Step 2: Work further on selection of the stakeholders and stakeholder engagement and familiarising stakeholders’ previous to the workshop.
  • Step 3: Multi-stakeholder workshop. Lead exercises, making it the knowledge more likely to be used by each stakeholder.
  • Step 4: Policy analysis with the project teams.

2. The process

Designing the scenario includes some key considerations relating to the participants, the content and the timing.

  • Selecting participants: Who?
    iSQPAPER identifies broad groups of actors for definition of the scenarios. The knowledge ultimately contributed by the multi-actor group inevitably reflects the particular group selected and the process of knowledge exchange/co-creation. To ensure objective knowledge, we engaged with the stakeholder teams, as shown in Figure 5.
  • The process: How?
    How various actors were involved was defined by the objectives of WP 7. Awareness that people have different subjectivities (‘mind sets’) was crucial in the workshop design. Therefore, we developed an agenda that includes content relevant to different actors.
  • Producing knowledge: What?
    The types of knowledge contributed by different actors were integrated in the multi-actor interactive process. Different forms of knowledge were considered, including practical, scientific, and policy knowledge.
  • Timing of the interactions: When?
    The timing of interactions with stakeholders to produce the iSQAPER scenarios was defined by the timing of the development of SQAPP for demonstration, and model development for upscalling.

3. Workshop content and participants

The scenario workshop was conducted with representatives of the iSQAPER project partners and a wide-range of multi-actors. The workshop took place in Madrid on February 2019. The facilitators of the workshop were from the UPM team, supported by the coordinator team (WU), the policy team (IEEP) and key actors of the science teams (FIBL). The major value and achievement of the scenario workshop was a common understanding and knowledge base for all actors on key elements of environmental footprint that could emerge from iSQAPER. Further, following the discussions during the scenario workshop, a basis for developing future scenarios was created.

The workshop was designed building form the roles and expectations of the different actors. The success of the scenario workshop is linked to the willingness of the multi actors to deliver expert and tacit knowledge. Since the work is transdisciplinary, the interaction of the stakeholders was also guided by transdisciplinary team, allowing for flexible interactions during the workshop, structuring the interactions in the onset and allowing for changes in the second part of the day. Figure 6 shows some images from the workshop and Figures 7 and 8 present the two tier-agenda.

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Figure 6
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Figure 7
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Figure 8

4. Workshop conclusions

The multi-actor discussion lead to the following conclusions:

  1. The upscaling model developed in here provides a comprehensive approach to evaluate the impact of change in agricultural management practices at the local level.
  2. The ecosystem services evaluated are useful to agricultural and environmental policy at the regional level.
  3. Farmers decisions on the adoption of innovative agricultural management practices benefit from the information on the impact on agricultural productivity.
  4. Climate change policy at the regional and continental scales could be linked to the changes in agricultural management practices.
  5. Key future scenarios useful to policy may include business as usual and a high ambition scenario.
  6. A scenario based on regional goals could be more difficult to formulate by also desirable, if possible.
  7. Even if the agricultural management practices are varied in each region, there are four practices that are relevant to soil health and ecosystem services that may be interesting to include in the scenarios. Those are: (a) incorporation of organic matter to decrease the input of chemical fertilisers and improve soil organic matter content, structure and water retention capacity; (b) reduced tillage to improve soil structure and erosion; (c) rotation of crops including the use of leguminous to improve biodiversity and soil nitrogen, and avoid excessive use of chemical fertilisers; and (d) organic production.

These conclusions were the basis of the scenario design carried out by the project teams and described in »Definition of scenarios and assessment of their likelihood

Note: For full references to papers quoted in this article see

» References


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