People in all walks of life – from town planners to judges and financial regulators – are subject to bias in their perceptions and judgements. Natural resource managers too are only human.
CEED researchers at the University of Western Australia have found that we may be able to improve the performance of natural resource management (NRM) if we recognise the influence of biases and work to reduce them.
“Decision makers do not always perceive things accurately,” says Sayed Iftekhar, the lead researcher on the study published in Conservation Letters. “It has been shown that, in making judgments dealing with uncertainty, decision makers are susceptible to different types of biases – beliefs that are inconsistent with reality or behaviors that compromise the achievement of objectives.”