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Stakeholder perceptions of adaptation space: The relevance of directexperience and perceived ability to adapt to climate change in Sweden
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Department of Water and Environmental Studies. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI), Umeå, Sweden.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This paper analyses perceptions of adaptation space in Swedish forestry and the potential for developing and implementing climate adaptation processes. The empirical material of this study builds on participatory methods and focus group discussions with private forest owners and forest officials in two forest intensive regions in Sweden. This allowed for a qualitative analysis of the many aspects of adaptation processes, with adaptation space as the main analytical framework to understand the capacity for climate adaptation on levels other than the national average, departing from actor’s perceptions rather than statistics and indices. We discuss if and how exposure to extreme weather events and variability in the past, and the prospect of future climate change and extremes, translates into adaptation action, and examine the role of perceived ability to adapt to the multiple effects of climate change.

Keyword [en]
Adaptation space, adaptive capacity, awareness, climate change, concern, forestry sector, perceptions, risk management, Sweden
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-90498OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-90498DiVA: diva2:613530
Available from: 2013-03-28 Created: 2013-03-28 Last updated: 2013-03-28Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Climate change adaptation processes: Regional and sectoral stakeholder perspectives
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Climate change adaptation processes: Regional and sectoral stakeholder perspectives
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Anpassningsprocesser inför klimatförändringar : Regionala och sektoriella intressentperspektiv
Abstract [en]

This thesis analyses how societal adaptation processes in public and private sectors at the regional to local level in Sweden are enacted. The thesis pays particular attention to critical factors that constrain or enable adaptation by focussing on: who are the stakeholders, how do different stakeholders perceive their capacity to adapt, and the role of stakeholder interaction in facilitating adaptation processes A combination of two analytical perspectives is used where one is based on key concepts within adaptation literature, and the other draws on boundary crossing and transdisciplinary knowledge production (stakeholders, adaptive capacity, and science-based stakeholder dialogues). The study is conducted within the scope of two overall case studies of local adaptation processes within an urban region, and a land-use based sector, the private forestry sector. The cases are setting the scene for the collection of empirical material which is achieved through qualitative methods, primarily focus groups discussions with local and regional, public and private stakeholders with an interest in, and responsibility for adaptation. The focus groups meetings are organized as a series of meetings to which different participatory techniques are applied. The study also builds on a comprehensive stakeholder mapping. First, the results suggest a systematic method for identifying stakeholders in adaptation research, policy, and planning applicable in both sectors and regions that combines top-down knowledge with experience and knowledge based on bottom-up processes. Second, the analysis of perceived adaptive capacities reveal several facilitating and constraining factors that relates both to the characteristics of climate risks, experience of climate variability and extreme weather events, and responsibility- and decision-making structures. Third, the analysis of the interaction between local experts and scientists show that there is potential for the boundary spanning function of science-based stakeholder dialogues in facilitating adaptation through stimulating questions and sharing different knowledge bases and experiences among the participants. However further attention needs to be taken to the institutional environment and the role of so called anchoring devices that help local experts to contextualise, discus and thus anchor scientific knowledge in their own decision-making context. In conclusion, there are both commonalities between adaptation processes in the two case studies and some marked differences, e.g., regarding the concept of adaptation, what type of adaptation actions that are identified, the perceived opportunities for adaptation and degree of complexity.

Abstract [sv]

Denna avhandling analyserar hur klimatanpassningsprocesser inom privata och offentliga sektorer på regional till lokal nivå i Sverige initieras, utvecklas och genomförs. Avhandlingen ägnar särskild uppmärksamhet åt identifiering av vilka intressenter (”stakeholders”) som är involverade i att underlätta och genomföra anpassning, uppfattningar om anpassningsförmåga samt vilken roll interaktion mellan olika intressenter kan ha för att underlätta anpassning. En kombination av två analytiska perspektiv används som bygger på tidigare forskning om klimatanpassningsprocesser samt transdisciplinär kunskapsproduktion. Studien genomförs inom ramen för två övergripande fallstudier av anpassningsprocesser i en urban region samt den privata skogssektorn. Fallstudierna utgör grunden för insamlingen av det empiriska materialet som bygger på kvalitativa metoder. Den främsta metoden är fokusgruppsdiskussioner med lokala och regionala, privata och offentliga aktörer med intresse av, eller ansvar för klimatanpassning. Fokusgrupperna organiseras som en serie möten där olika deltagandetekniker tillämpas. Studien bygger också på en omfattande intressentkartläggning. I avhandlingen utvecklas och ges förslag på en stegvis metod för att identifiera intressenter för anpassningsprocesser som kan användas inom forskning och praktik. Studien analyserar också hur olika intressentgrupper upplever förmågan att hantera klimatförändringar. Ett antal möjliggörande och begränsande faktorer identifieras så som karaktären på de upplevda klimatriskerna, erfarenhet av klimatvariationer och extrema väderhändelser, samt ansvar- och beslutsstrukturer. Slutligen, analyseras om och i så fall hur interaktionen mellan lokala experter och forskare som deltar i intressantdialoger (”science-based stakeholder dialogues”) kan underlätta anpassning. Resultaten visar att det finns potential genom att deltagarna ges möjlighet att ställa frågor tillvarandra och dela med sig av sina olika kunskapsbaser och erfarenheter, samt utforska olika anpassningsalternativ. Däremot behövs vidare studier för att undersöka betydelsen av det institutionella sammanhanget samt hur olika verktyg (”anchoring devices”) kan bidra när det gäller att förankra och omsätta kunskap om klimatförändringar i olika beslutskontexter. Avslutningsvis visar denna studie på att det finns både likheter och skillnader i hur anpassningsprocesser kommer till uttryck bland de olika aktörsgrupperna inom fallstudierna, t.ex. när det gäller hur begreppet anpassning används, vilken typ av anpassning som identifieras, upplevda möjligheter för anpassning samt graden av komplexitet.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2013. 102 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 579
Keyword
Adaptation processes, adaptive capacity, climate change, forestry, participatory methods, perceptions, private and public organizations, risks, roles, stakeholder dialogues, stakeholders, Sweden, transdisciplinarity, urban regions, Anpassningskapacitet, anpassningsprocesser, deltagandemetoder, intressenter, intressentdialoger, klimatförändringar, privata och offentliga organisationer, risker, roller, skogsbruk, Sverige, transdisciplinaritet, uppfattningar, urbana regioner
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-90500 (URN)978-91-7519-636-7 (ISBN)
Public defence
2013-04-26, K3, Kåkenhus, Campus Norrköping, Linköpings universitet, Norrköping, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental ResearchFormas, 2006-4871-7662-55
Available from: 2013-03-28 Created: 2013-03-28 Last updated: 2013-03-28Bibliographically approved

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