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Problematic practice in integrated impact assessment: the role of consultants and predictive computer models in burying uncertainty

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Duncan, R (2008) Problematic practice in integrated impact assessment: the role of consultants and predictive computer models in burying uncertainty. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, 26 (1). pp. 53-66. ISSN 1461-5517

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Abstract

It is well known in impact assessment that predictive model outputs will be as credible as their inputs and that model assumptions will drive outputs. What is less well known is how the practice of integrated impact assessment with its pervasive use of predictive computer models and multiple teams of consultants can influence evidence relied upon in deliberations over the impacts and benefits of major projects. This paper draws on an integrated impact assessment of a major energy infrastructure project in Australia known as Basslink to examine the epistemic implications of current practice. It will be argued that what has become standard procedure can serve to diminish the disclosure of prediction uncertainty.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Australia, Basslink, predictive computer models, certainty trough, integrated impact assessment, prediction, uncertainty, simulations
Journal or Publication Title: Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal
Page Range: pp. 53-66
ISSN: 1461-5517
Identification Number - DOI: 10.3152/146155108X303931
Additional Information: Published by Beech Tree Publishing on behalf of the International Association for Impact Assessment
Date Deposited: 20 May 2008 12:39
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:41
URI: http://eprints.utas.edu.au/id/eprint/6487
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