This paper proposes an eco-integrated methodology for managing the structural uncertainty (EMSU) that is inherent in socio-ecological systems. The methodology incorporates the human factor side by side to economic and environmental aspects and in this way considers the system as complex, reflexive and emergent. Reflexivity implies the existence of structural uncertainty and although this cannot be reduced it needs to be managed for the system to move towards sustainable solutions. Our EMSU methodology combines elements from the eco-integrated approach of Naredo (2003), social multi-criteria evaluation (Munda 2004), the pluralist approach (van Asselt, 2000), and, importantly, Maturana and Varela's "biology of knowledge" (1987). The integration of those approaches into EMSU provides an original approach for the management of structural uncertainty within a strong sustainability paradigm, specifically one that is premised on human consciousness from the perspective of the biology of knowledge. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.
- Eco-integrated multicriteria perspectives
- Human consciousness
- Strong sustainability