Hi @Frbddnforest

1) "*Can I ask you if in your thesis you made use of measures as economics and financial inequality ?*"

No, I did not. I only considered commercial farmers (i.e. not communal/subsistence farmers), because the differences in the two agroecological system are too big to use a single model, IMHO. Also, the DSS tool is meant to be used by the individual farmer to help him/her make an informed choice on the best way to manage livestock predation on his land. In terms of economics, what will work for one farmer with enough capital to implement it, might be impossible for another farmer. But the farmer himself is best placed to know his own financial situation. The only way where this comes into play is at the current level of predation losses: the more the farmer is currently losing, the more sense a higher-cost solution will make (i.e. he will "save" more money if he spends more on protecting his livestock... as long as the cost is much lower than the expected savings, it will benefit him to implement that method).

2) "*Can I ask you how did you compare value of habitat losses / ecological losses, with value of profit ?*"

I used a very simplified method:

Total ExpectedUtility = CostUtility + EffectiveUtility + SustainUtility

The cost Utility multiply the probability of a certain cost outcome with the cost class ( Cost class (N$) 0 = 0, 0 - 12 000 = -5, 12 000 - 120 000 = -10, 120 000 - 1 200 000 = -30 and > 1 200 000 = -50), the EffectiveUtility is the probability of a certain livestock loss percentage multiplied with its utility (Livestock Loss %: 0 % = 0, 0-3% = -5, 3-10% = -10, 10-20% = -30 & >20% = -50), the SustainUtility was simply the probability of a certain method either being sustainable (Utility 100) or not-sustainable (Utility -100) In effect the best outcome (Expected Utility with lowest cost and highest effectiveness and most sustainable with a probablity of 1) would be (0+0+100) = 100 and the worst case (Most expensive, ineffective and unsustainable with a probability of 1) would be (-50 -50 -100) = -200, if a method had best short-term profit (0 + 0) Utility and a probability of 1 (certain) of being unsustainable, the Effective Utility would be -100. If it was 100 sustainable, but certain to have maximum cost and to result in maximum livestock predation, it would have an Effective Utility of (100 -50 -50) = 0. This reflect the cases that both non-cost effective (unprofitable) and unsustainable methods would have the lowest utility (-200), methods that were cost-effective in the short term, but not sustainable would have a utility of -100, methods that were sustainable, but not cost-effective, would have a utility of 0, and methods that were both 100% cost-effective and sustainable would have the maximum utility of 100 (of course, in reality nothing is 100% certain).

However, the model does not directly address the question you are asking (i.e. how does the short-term value compare to the long-term (ecological) value?), but it used the same basic formula for every individual mitigation method (to get its Total Expected Utility) and compared *them with each other. I.e. *the methods with the best outcome in terms of probabilities of success in both profit and sustainability, would have the highest expected utility and *vice versa*. Of course, the model can be refined over time, as more data becomes available. But the *relative* utility of the different methods should remain similar.

3) *Can you elaborate how did you compare measures to gauge the value of biodiversity with monetary values , and what could be time-span to put those in perspective of short term, long term (years, decades, generations)?*

As you can see, I did not actually gauge the value of biodiversity in monetary terms (and I am not convinced that this is even possible, at least not with our current knowledge or lack thereof). Strictly speaking, sustainability could be measured as annual production into infinty (or at least until the intensity of radiation from the sun changes significantly)... this is the definition of "sustainable" after all, but this would mean that almost no measure expect for sustainability becomes important (since anything times infinity will always be more than any short-term value). Long term should at least be over generations -- in the typical setup on commercial farms where it is mostly family farms and the children (eldest son, normally) will inherit the farm for generations to come, this can be easily motivated. But again, I did not even attempt to put a monetary value on this. Instead, I transformed my effectiveness (potential increas in profits) and costs into utility values, combining the probabilities of certain outcomes, with the utility (value) of those outcomes. It is an attempt to quantify risk, rather than simply profit.

HTH