Using Data for Decision-Making: From Observations to Indicators and Other Policy Tools

Matt Walpole, Melodie McGeoch, Philip Bubb, Neil Brummitt

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


Previous chapters in this handbook have focused primarily on how todevelop observing systems and generate biodiversity observations. Drawing onthese foundations, this chapter explores the use of such data in decision-making processes. It reflects on what data might be used for, how it is packaged, what the challenges are and what to consider in getting it right. It is intended to be a thought-provoking look at insights gained in communicating biodiversity science for policy purposes over the last several years. With a particular focus on indicators, one of the most common forms in which observations are used by decision-makers, the chapter considers the context in which indicators are used and how they are developed. It explores the realities of indicator development and use, including some of the key challenges and ways around them. It also touches on assessments and assessment processes as another important tool linking science to policy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe GEO Handbook on Biodiversity Observation Networks
EditorsMichele Walters, Robert J Scholes
Place of PublicationCham Switzerland
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783319272887
ISBN (Print)9783319272863
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Indicator development
  • Data use
  • Policy impact
  • Assessments

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