Defining assessment projects and scenarios for policy support: Use of ontology in Integrated Assessment and Modelling

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPaper in conference proceeding


Integrated Assessment and Modelling (IAM) provides an interdisciplinary approach to support ex-ante decision-making by combining quantitative models representing different systems and scales into a framework for integrated assessment. Scenarios in IAM are developed in the interaction between scientists and stakeholders to explore possible pathways of future development. As IAM typically combines models from different disciplines, there is a clear need for a consistent definition and implementation of scenarios across models, policy problems and scales. This paper presents such a unified conceptualization for scenario and assessment projects. We demonstrate the use of common ontologies in building this unified conceptualization, e.g. a common ontology on assessment projects and scenarios. The common ontology and the process of ontology engineering are used in a case study, which refers to the development of SEAMLESS-IF, an integrated modelling framework to assess agricultural and environmental policy options as to their contribution to sustainable development. The presented common ontology on assessment projects and scenarios can be reused by IAM consortia and if required, adapted by using the process of ontology engineering as proposed in this paper. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • S. Janssen
  • F. Ewert
  • Hongtao Li
  • I. N. Athanasiadis
  • J. J. F. Wien
  • O. Therond
  • M. J. R. Knapen
  • I. Bezlepkina
  • Johanna Alkan Olsson
  • A. E. Rizzoli
  • H. Belhouchette
  • Mats Svensson
  • M. K. van Ittersum
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary


  • Integration, Knowledge management, Collaborative approach, Multi-disciplinary teams, Policy assessment
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnvironmental Modelling & Software
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Publication categoryResearch
Event2nd International Conference on Asian Simulation and Modelling - Chiang Mai, Thailand
Duration: 2007 Jan 92007 Jan 11

Publication series

ISSN (Print)1364-8152
ISSN (Electronic)1873-6726


Conference2nd International Conference on Asian Simulation and Modelling
CityChiang Mai