Part of the book: Agroforestry for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services
Development of composite indicators is considered an important approach for evaluating sustainable development. For agriculture, different indicators have been developed such as Delphi, IDEA, MESMIS, MOTIFS, RISE, or SAFE. For its construction, usually bivariate and multivariate statistical techniques were employed. These are pragmatic tools used to simplify the description of complex systems by the use of three functions: to simplify, to quantify, and to communicate easily. Criteria for indicator selection include policy relevance, validity, accessibility, and measurability. However, operational evaluation of agricultural sustainability presents problems, because it requires analyzing the future production of goods and services, which need to be observed on a reasonable time horizon, and other difficulties involve interpreting the combination of indicators required for such analyses. This chapter realizes a review of these methodologies and its applications.
Part of the book: Sustainability Assessment and Reporting