Project

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Environmental Decision Analysis with Games - Edanaga

Applicant Aubert Alice H.
Number 173973
Funding scheme Ambizione
Research institution Abteilung Umweltsozialwissenschaften EAWAG
Institution of higher education Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology - EAWAG
Main discipline Other disciplines of Environmental Sciences
Start/End 01.03.2018 - 28.02.2022
Approved amount 882'921.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Other disciplines of Environmental Sciences
Applied psychology

Keywords (9)

water management; sustainability sciences; cognitive psychology; stakeholder participation; serious games; rational decision-making; decision analysis; gamification; behavioral operation research

Lay Summary (French)

Lead
Gérer l’environnement - bien commun - concerne les citoyens : les mesures décidées sont souvent financées par des fonds publics, et peuvent changer le quotidien. C’est le cas pour la gestion des eaux urbaines. Les options non-conventionnelles de gestion des eaux usées peuvent conduire à l’installation de toilettes différentes (par exemple, toilettes séparant l’urine à la source) et à des traitements locaux. Aussi, ces décisions doivent être transparentes et participatives. L’analyse de décision multicritères (MCDA) est une méthode qui permet de prendre de telles décisions. Mais à ce jour, les participants sont limités à quelques acteurs, souvent experts.
Lay summary

Notre objectif principal est de développer la méthode MCDA pour que les novices et/ou citoyens participent aux prises de décision. Les jeux sérieux et la ludification présentent des caractéristiques prometteuses : ils permettraient d’éveiller l’intérêt pour des sujets peu attrayants, de maintenir l’attention pour des tâches pénibles, et ils aideraient à apprendre. Aujourd’hui, très peu de travaux ont rigoureusement testé ces hypothèses. Ainsi, nous souhaitons (i) tester et améliorer un prototype d’enquête en ligne ludifiée permettant aux citoyens d’exprimer leurs préférences, (ii) utiliser ce produit pour identifier ce que les Suisses trouvent important pour la gestion future des eaux usées, et quelles options ils préfèreraient. Nous cherchons également (iii) à évaluer deux jeux développés pour structurer une décision à venir sur la gestion des eaux usées, et explorer les conséquences des options.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 12.12.2017

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Dr. W. Medema/ Department of Bioresource Engineering/ McGill University Canada (North America)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Dr. Judit Lienert/ Decision Analysis/ Eawag Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
- Exchange of personnel
Dr. M. Kocher and R. Bauer/ Game Design/ Zürcher Hochschule der Künste Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Prof. Dr. B. von Helversen/ Cognitive Decision Psychology/ University of Zürich Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Prof. Dr. Arjen Wals/ Education and Learning Sciences/ Wageningen University, the Netherlands Netherlands (Europe)
- Publication

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
EURO 2018 Talk given at a conference Online weight elicitation: is there really an issue? 08.07.2018 Valencia, Spain Aubert Alice H.;
EGU 2018, session EOS17 Games for geoscience Poster Environmental decision-making: a serious game! 09.04.2018 Vienna, Austria Aubert Alice H.;


Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
New media (web, blogs, podcasts, news feeds etc.) Gaming route leads to solid results Eawag News International Italian-speaking Switzerland Western Switzerland German-speaking Switzerland 2018

Use-inspired outputs

Abstract

Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) is a useful method to tackle complex environmental decisions. MCDA allows rational value trade-offs between objectives for each stakeholder. Usually, ten to 20 stakeholders participate in interviews or group workshops to structure the problem and elicit their preferences. MCDA aggregates both scientific predictions and personal values in a decision model. However, environmental decisions impact everyone. Moreover, MCDA is still facing some difficulties linked with preference construction (e.g. cognitive load of the task, stability of preferences) and different biases (e.g. range insensitivity, confirmation and groupthink biases). Edanaga explores how to increase public participation in MCDA, i.e. how to involve citizens and include what is important to them (their preferences) in the decision process, while addressing current MCDA limits. Edanaga hypothesises that the key can be serious gaming (game used for other purposes than entertainment) and gamification (use of game elements in applications other than games). Edanaga experimentally tests these hypotheses. The experiments are based on large samples to allow robust statistical results and focus on the benefit of gamification in comparison to non-gamified equivalent MCDA procedures (control). Edanaga is also an applied research project, focusing on a real world decision about innovative approaches to increase the sustainability of wastewater management. Edanaga draws on a current preliminary case study in Paris metropolis; new case studies will be conducted in Switzerland. The expected theoretical results address research gaps on (1) the feasibility of using online gamified surveys for preference elicitation and serious games for problem structuring and exploration of consequences of the decision, which are key stages of preference construction and (2) behavioural aspects of MCDA (effects on well-known biases). Expected applied results concern (1) the readiness of citizens to accept various wastewater management options (from current centralized to innovative decentralized ones) and (2) behavioural aspects (effect of the citizens’ gender and of the context (urban vs. rural) on peoples’ values and preferred options). Edanaga‘s impact is threefold. An innovative survey concept will be available for participatory MCDA, which will support the actual decision-makers by providing insight about the citizens’ preferences. Wastewater authorities will receive an easily adaptable survey tool for citizen consultation. Edanaga will contribute to scientific progress in the field of behavioural operational research (BOR).
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