Table 1. The main differences between scenarios in terms of the key indirect and direct drivers identified by participants. The final column describes the current conditions in the Biscay social-ecological system to compare the scenarios to current conditions.

Oppressed Biscay Global Delicatessen TechnoFaith Cultivating Social Values Present Conditions
Global demographic trends Changes in characteristics, not in quantity: ↑ elderly population, ↑ immigrant workers, ↑ qualified youth going abroad Migration concept changes to ↑ multiculturalism: Population density remains = but with ↑ movements of people Slight population growth: ↑elderly population; Env. refugees and armed conflict entail an ↑ in immigration Population ↓. Emigration from cities to rural areas and to other regions 1,155,772 inhabitants. Demographic trend tends toward stability
Changes in production and consumption patterns ↑↑ delocalized consumption: ↑↑ importation rate. The elite demand high-quality healthy local food (rest can’t afford) Specialized in producing local agroecological products, consumed by small local elite and exported ↑ efficiency and productive systems competitively. Society is not worried about responsible consumption Responsible consumption and a tendency toward a sustainable production and toward a self-sufficiency model ↑ consumption, with a ↑ rate of importation. Responsible consumption only practiced by small social groups
Education and knowledge-sharing Privatization of the education system ↑, with no strong education in social values Access to knowledge ↑, but quality ↓. In the first years, integration conflicts appear, which subsequently lead to multicultural education The population is ↑↑ educated and there is an ↑ in technical degrees Education and knowledge sharing are key. The education level of Biscay’s population is ↑↑, as well as social participation The education level of the citizens has ↑ in recent decades
Development of the industrial, construction, and service sectors Economic growth is based on cultural, rural, and green tourism. Infrastructural dev maintains construction sector Economy ↓ as a consequence of not respecting nature’s limits. The service sector ↑ together with ecological tourism Biscay is a knowledge and technology supplier. High technology sector stands out Balance between sectors. Industrial sector ↓ weight and remains a local industry based on renewable energies Industrial sector has reconverted from big pollutant industries to medium size ones, with a promotion of research centers
Development of the primary sector Primary sector converts into a elite green tourism-tertiary sector, so some traditional uses are retaken Ecological agriculture ↑, agrotourism ↑ and landscape quality ↑. Arable land area ↓ because of infrastructural dev. Primary sector ↓ and rural areas are mainly used by urban people for leisure service, so importations are ↑↑ Primary sector ↑ and is directed toward self-sufficiency This sector´s economic impact is ↓. ↑ dependence on imported products
Participatory policy making, governance, and institutional coherence Decisions are made by a few people whose governance model is repressive and totalitarian Decisions are made in a global reactive way Multinational corporations have huge decision-making power. Social associations ↓ Government bodies are simplified and decisions are made in a very participatory way Social participation is medium to low and participatory processes are not in the center
Innovation, science, and the rapid pace of technological change
Social inequality → ↑ the rift between those with and without access to technology
There is a modernization of productive methods. People’s academic knowledge ↑
There is a high level of innovation and dynamism and rapid technological advancements
Society owns technology and scientific knowledge and uses it for decision making
The incorporation of new technologies to industry or educational system is quick
Water, air, and biotic pollution; soil contamination; Climate change. Invasive species expansion and transgenic plant use are a risk for the already poor biodiversity Ecological agriculture stimulations + the use of best available techniques → ↓ contamination and pollution Technological advances ↓ pollution and climate change effects; generalized transgenic organism use ↑↑ biotic pollution Environmental degradation and pollution ↓↓ because of social and political decisions in favor of ecosystems Pollution from industries has ↓; transport and intensive farming are an imp. cause of pollution
Ecosystem degradation, river alteration, transformations in agriculture All farming activities, except those working for elite production, are abandoned Recovery of river basins and other ecosystems; but some degradation because of infrastructural dev. Ecosystems are highly modified to adapt them to satisfy population’s demands (almost no natural ecosystem exist) Ecosystems degradation disappears as far as possible Ecosystems are quite degraded in general; although some areas are still well preserved or have been restored
Intensive forest management 1) Autochthonous forest regeneration in protected areas 2) Intensive high rate growth plantations for energetic production Forestry is reoriented to ↑ quality products (mainly autochthonous) and ↑ sustainable management Some small places are dedicated to forest regeneration A sustainable forest management is well established. Quality and autochthonous sp are promoted Forestry is mainly based on exotic short-term species intensively managed
Land and urban planning Heterogeneous landscape: strongly protected isolated natural areas; hardly damaged areas, and abandoned rural areas Tendency to cluster densely and maximize urbanized land use → cities do not grow, although infrastructure construction ↑ Urban areas are built as knowledge and technology places, whereas rural areas appear to be large peri-urban parks There are multiple and diverse land uses, forming a mosaic landscape ↑ in urban areas and infrastructures; residential urbanization ↑ in rural areas