A decision support procedure for the bioeconomy transition: A Colombian case study

Gaetano Grilli, Tatiana Cantillo, Kerry Turner, Jaime Erazo, Mario Andrés Murcia López, Juan Sebastian Valle Parra, Felipe Garcia Cardona, Silvia Ferrini

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An increasing number of countries and regions consider the bioeconomy transition a strategic policy priority. When approached through the lens of a circular economy perspective, investments in bioeconomy have the potential to enhance resource utilisation efficiency, preserve biodiversity and ecosystems, and foster sustainable development with low emissions. At the same time, if requirements and contextual factors of bioeconomy strategies are not formally analysed, bioeconomic investments might lead to unintended negative consequences. This paper proposes a decision support procedure to design, assess, prioritise, and monitor bioeconomy investments and policies. The flexibility and scalability of our decision support procedure is tested in Colombia to foster a regional and local transition to bioeconomy initiatives that consider the local capital assets and the stakeholders' views. The heterogeneous character of the Colombian environment, economy, society and culture represents an ideal condition to test the strength of the decision support procedure to promote bioeconomy in low and middle-income countries. Our empirical results highlight the benefit of adopting a formal assessment framework that includes strategic national indicators, regional features and stakeholders’ views. In terms of the Colombian regional bioeconomy ambitions, we highlight the need for expanding knowledge hubs and participatory stakeholder networks and buttressing appropriate financial mechanisms.
Original languageEnglish
Article number120042
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Early online date9 Jan 2024
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2024

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