EPA Science Inventory

Development of Relative Importance Values as Contribution Weights for Evaluating Human Wellbeing: An Ecosystem Services Example

Citation:

SMITH, L. M., J. L. CASE, L. HARWELL, H. M. SMITH, AND J. K. SUMMERS. Development of Relative Importance Values as Contribution Weights for Evaluating Human Wellbeing: An Ecosystem Services Example. Human Ecology. Springer, New York, NY, 41(4):631-641, (2013).

Description:

The dependence of society on the flows, valuation and provisioning of various capital driven services is key to understanding and developing linkages to human wellbeing. By extension, decision makers need knowledge and an array of products that allow them to think more broadly about the impacts their decisions have on ecosystem services and to understand, in qualitative and quantitative terms, the implications of these impacts on societal welfare. We are developing an index of wellbeing for the U.S. that will be used to evaluate the contribution of ecosystem services to human wellbeing in context of social and economic services in a predictive modeling framework. This paper describes the development of relative importance values (RIVs) as weighting factors for evaluating human wellbeing in relation to ecosystem services. The ecosystem services module is one component of the larger wellbeing model framework for which economic and social service modules will be developed in the same manner. The approach presented here utilizes professional opinion assigned as RIVs and rank data in conjunction with public perception to evaluate wellbeing in terms of the relationships among ecosystem services, wellbeing domains and elements of wellbeing.

Purpose/Objective:

This paper describes an approach for integrating public perception and professional opinion in the development of prioritization weights. The weighting factors will be used in the construction of a human wellbeing index and for developing wellbeing production functions.

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Start Date: 08/01/2013
Completion Date: 08/01/2013
Record Last Revised: 09/17/2013
Record Created: 03/19/2012
Record Released: 03/19/2012
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 242007

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LAB

GULF ECOLOGY DIVISION

ECOSYSTEM ASSESSMENT BRANCH