"We used Patchworks in a public workshop to give stakeholders the opportunity to get involved and explore the trade-offs that they were interested in. The model was intuitive and easy for people to grasp at their level of understanding. The model outputs really helped people see the point that trade-offs were difficult and you cannot have all values all the time. We didn’t end up with a solution that gave everyone everything that they wanted, but Patchworks helped people gain a better understanding of the challenges we faced implementing ecosystem management, and confidence that we were taking the right approach."

Barry Waito,
Area Forester,
LP Canada

Trade-Off Analysis

Trade-off analysis explores the cost of relaxing one goal in order to achieve an increase in another goal. A classic trade-off situation is the reduction of sustainable wood supply resulting from retaining old-growth forest. The goal programming framework in Patchworks is an ideal tool to conduct trade-off analysis: it's as easy as adjusting the weight values associated with each goal. These weights assign the priority that each goal has relative to the others. Simply run the Patchworks model several times with varying weight values to map out the alternate levels of production between different targets.

With its support for scripting, Patchworks makes trade-off analysis fast and efficient. Patchworks provides a batch modeling framework to easily assemble parameters representing alternate management policies from a suite of simple code components. This modeling framework provides a self-documenting system to record modeling parameters, and makes setting up and running multiple scenarios easy and less prone to error. If datasets change and scenarios need to be rerun, the modeling framework eliminates guesswork and saves time.