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Application of a spatial decision support system to National Park management

Jones, Kylie (2014) Application of a spatial decision support system to National Park management. Masters by Coursework thesis, Murdoch University.

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National park managers must balance multiple, potentially conflicting management objectives and criteria, often in the face of limited budgets and patchy data. A spatial decision support system, based on a multi-criteria evaluation, was the option explored for overcoming these difficulties. It was applied to selected national parks in Western Australia with the aim of integrating several quantitative and qualitative datasets with national park managers’ assessments of the relative importance of the multiple indicators of parks’ biodiversity, Aboriginal heritage and recreation values. The outcomes were used to highlight areas within a national park, and national parks within the state, of highest management priority.

The results of this research indicate the use of a spatial decision support system can enhance decision processes by making the trade-offs that are inevitable in decision making for national park management more transparent, and can assist managers to produce more effective, evidence-based decision outcomes. With appropriate acknowledgement of limitations in data, these outcomes can be valuable to national park managers in other management or planning decisions.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters by Coursework)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Supervisor(s): Moore, Susan and Kobryn, Halina
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