Policy makers are faced on daily basis with different policy choices and objectives that, more often than not, are subject to inherent conflicts, implying underlying trade-offs that need to be taken into account. For example, if a policymaker wishes to construct a road, he has to consider a number of factors amongst others, the cost of the investment, its socio-economic return in terms of social cohesion and economic trade, environmental aspects, safety considerations and so on. How can a policymaker be certain that he has calibrated these different elements in a balanced way? In what could be potentially the solution, the CONSENSUS project will strive to model existing real world user cases and deliver the tools that can, in an easy and comprehensive manner, provide policy makers with optimal choices based on a number of relevant criteria. This investigation is meant to cover two important real world user-cases in the project: one dealing with Biofuels and Climate Change (EU Renewable Energy Directive), and the other dealing with the Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-T).
Last but not least, one of the goals of Consensus is to involve citizens’ in the policymaking scheme since their input can potentially become highly valuable in various stages, from the gathering of the necessary data, through formulating public opinion as one of the objectives in the model, to eventually playing the role of exploring the attained tradeoffs and contributing to their weighing. .