Table 1. Methods for handling uncertainty.
Passive methods
(p-I) Ignorance: the policy development process proceeds without an observable choice regarding the handling of an uncertain aspect
(p-RI) Recognized Ignorance: the uncertain aspect is identified and expressed, but a decision is taken without considering other options
(p-A) Avoidance: uncertainty is avoided by restricting the scope of the joint frame, e.g., by leaving out or deferring measures of which the effectiveness and/or feasibility (technical and/or political) are uncertain
Active methods
Increase uncertainty tolerance
Substantive uncertainty
(ts-T) Transparency: share information about the origin and quality of available knowledge and make the acquisition of new knowledge traceable, e.g., by involving actors in modeling and data collection activities
(ts-S) Safeguards: work with bandwidths in calculations and communicate results using orders of magnitude rather than precise figures
Process uncertainty
(tp-TB) Trust Building: increase trust among actors by furthering social interaction, encouraging information sharing, and emphasizing interdependencies
Reduce uncertainty
Substantive uncertainty
(rs-KA) Knowledge Acquisition: consult experts, study scientific literature, collect empirical data, perform model-based simulations, analyze and interpret findings, etc.
(rs-EBAK) Establishing Best Available Knowledge: discuss rivaling knowledge and knowledge limitations (qualitative), analyze uncertainty (quantitative), and make assumptions
Process uncertainty
rp-P Procedures: develop formal rules and procedures that reduce the actors’ room for unexpected strategic behavior
rp-C Commitment: involve influential actors who can assume decision-making authority and emphasize the benefits of reaching an agreement