Work package 4 addresses the social perspective and prepares the information generated in work packages 1 to 3 for decision-makers. For this purpose, the following questions should be answered: Who are the relevant decision-makers? What do the decision-making processes look like? What information do they need to be able to make informed decisions? In which legal framework are they - both the decision-makers and the decisions themselves - embedded? How can the information be provided in the best possible way?
In cooperation with the relevant stakeholders, solutions are developed in a living lab approach. This is a “laboratory” for testing social and technological innovations under the most realistic conditions possible - that is, in the actual working environment of the target group. more information about the living lab approach
Stakeholder identification and analysis
The first phase of the Living Lab begins with the identification and analysis of the relevant stakeholders. First, a range of actors is identified on the basis of project, literature and internet research. These can include politics (e.g. federal or state ministries or municipal representatives such as mayors), administrative institutions (e.g. upper federal or state authorities such as the Federal Environment Agency or the Lower Saxony State Agency for Water Management, Coastal and Nature Conservation), associations (e.g. NABU, BUND or fishing associations), research institutions, NGOs (e.g. OSPAR or HELCOM), companies, etc. Then, based on methods for stakeholder analyzes, a matrix is created that allows the key actors to be identified.
The first phase of the Living Lab also includes the analysis of the legal framework in which the actors identified in Task 4.1 act.
Analysis of decision-making processes
The results of tasks 4.1 and 4.2 form the basis for the analysis of the decision-making processes at the end of the first phase of the living lab. It is examined in which legal and institutional framework and by whom which decisions are made. As part of a qualitative [i] System Dynamics Modeling [/ i], “what-if” scenarios are developed. For example, how do decisions change in an alternative legal framework? How do decisions change if the decision-makers receive e.g. additional information about sedimentation processes or biogeochemical processes that influence carbon storage? It is also exploring how this information should be provided. How do decisions change when the information is provided based on highly innovative digital augmented reality (AR) applications compared to traditional visualizations in e.g. GIS-based maps?
For these analyzes, interviews are held with the stakeholders classified as relevant in Task 4.1 and workshops are organized. In this way, in an iterative process, the decision-making situations, the information needs and possible instruments to cover this information need are concretized more and more.
Development and experiments with augmented reality (AR) application
The second phase of the Living Lab includes experimenting with a highly innovative Augmented Reality (AR) application. AR offers the possibility to visualize complex relationships and large amounts of data very clearly. The options for AR applications are determined based on the model results from WP 1 to 3 and the results from 4.3.
With the AR applications, the "what-if" scenarios are visualized and, for example, the effects of certain developments (e.g. the effects of rising sea levels on the various carbon stores) or decisions (e.g. reducing the pollutant concentration in the sea by changing fertilizer management in agriculture).
This makes it easier for decision-makers to visually - and thus easily understand - grasp the effects of their decisions on the basis of scientific analyzes. The developed AR applications are then presented to the identified stakeholders so that they can test the application under conditions that are as realistic as possible. The aim is to receive their feedback and to gradually improve the AR application, e.g. by adapting the user interface or adding further parameters.
The third phase of the Living Lab is dedicated to the comprehensive evaluation.
Handling the developed AR prototype
For this purpose, the user feedback on handling the AR application is systematic
recorded. This is done in a two-step process. First, users' assessments are queried and evaluated using a standardized questionnaire. This forms the basis for a joint workshop in which the results of the questionnaires are reflected in the group. In this way, users are given the opportunity to communicate their experiences directly to the AR developers. On the other hand, the direct exchange also serves to communicate why the features desired by the decision-makers may not be provided.
Entire stakeholder process
The evaluation of the stakeholder process takes place alongside the process. This helps to continuously revise the process and, if necessary, to intervene and improve it. For example, it is about the question of sufficient transparency (everyone is informed in good time) and communication (everyone is adequately informed) or completeness (are all relevant stakeholders identified and involved).