The definition of management actions in natural resource management requires the integration of all types of knowledge involved. An appropriate approach for such a challenge is the ideal of transdisciplinarity. A transdisciplinary process can be considered “consultative” when knowledge is simply gathered and collated, or “participatory” when knowledge integration is undertaken collectively. In this paper, we present a mixed mode procedure (i.e., using interviews, questionnaires, and group discussions) that empirically demonstrates the difference between consultative and participatory transdisciplinary processes. The mixed mode procedure is used for identifying the most relevant problems occurring in the coastal system of Praia da Vitória bay, Azores, Portugal. This mixed mode procedure is likely to be useful for other studies, because the results highlight the need to promote face-to-face interaction at the earliest opportunity, and because it allows an understanding to be gained of social learning processes, the influence of power, and participant behaviour during interaction with others.
- stakeholder participation
- natural resource management