Table of Contents

Comparative Environmental Economic Assessment

Comparative Environmental Economic Assessment

Edited by Raymond J.G.M. Florax, Peter Nijkamp and Kenneth G. Willis

Over the last decade, economists have increasingly recognized the role of meta-analysis and value transfer in synthesizing knowledge and efficiently exploiting the existing pool of knowledge. Comparative Environmental Economic Assessment explores the potential significance of using these techniques, particularly in environmental economics. Both meta-analysis and value transfer constitute major research tools which efficiently use knowledge previously acquired from other studies. The book focuses on the potential role and usefulness of these tools in environmental economic research, and goes on to address their validity, relevance and applicability

Chapter 1: Meta-analysis and value transfer: comparative assessment of scientific knowledge

Raymond J.G.M. Florax, Peter Nijkamp and Kenneth G. Willis

Subjects: economics and finance, environmental economics, environment, environmental economics

Extract

1. Meta-analysis and value transfer: comparative assessment of scientific knowledge Raymond J.G.M. Florax, Peter Nijkamp, Kenneth G. Willis 1 THE KNOWLEDGE PARADOX IN SCIENTIFIC ANALYSIS The level of scientific knowledge has risen to an unprecedented degree in the postwar period and the cumulative stock of new knowledge has in the past fifty years far exceeded the total knowledge stock gathered by mankind during the previous centuries. Not surprisingly, our modern society is often referred to as a knowledge society. Notwithstanding this favourable picture, it is also increasingly recognized that the need for more information has risen almost limitlessly. From daily operational choices to long-term strategic decisions, the amount of information needed by decision makers can hardly be satisfied or covered anymore. It thus seems that in a knowledge society the demand for scientific knowledge and information is growing even faster than the supply. This mismatch, called the ‘knowledge paradox’, prompts the question whether the balance between supply and demand can be restored. A surprising feature of the abundance of scientific insights in our current knowledge society is the lack of scientific synthesis. The process of scientific knowledge gathering proceeds usually in a fragmented and individualized way, without due attention to research efforts made previously or elsewhere. This is clearly witnessed by the present popularity of, and need for, survey articles that aim to review concisely the state of affairs in a relevant area of scientific research. Most of these contributions,...