Using mental models to understand soil management

Katrin Prager (Corresponding Author), Michiel Curfs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Soil degradation continues to be a serious issue. This is partially due to the specific characteristics of soil and degradation, many of which are linked to how humans perceive their environment. How a person perceives soil degradation will influence how they interpret this phenomenon, what attitude they adopt towards it, and how they will ultimately decide to act. Mental models are understood as constructed by the human mind as a result of perception, experience, attitudes and knowledge, and the comprehension of discourse. Applying the concept of mental models allows an understanding of land manager decision-making with regard to soil management, linking perceptions, attitudes and beliefs with behaviour. We show how mental models can help identify consistencies and differences of perceptions of different soil-related stakeholders, such as farmers, scientists, administrators, advisors and policy makers. In a practical test of the concept, a diagram-based representation of mental models was applied in south-western Spain. We found that the occurrences of overlap in the mental model of soil-related stakeholders are the areas where communication should focus. It is in these areas where strategies to address the problem of soil degradation can be developed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-44
Number of pages9
JournalSoil Use & Management
Volume32
Issue number1
Early online date13 Jan 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2016

Fingerprint

soil management
soil degradation
Soils
stakeholders
Degradation
stakeholder
soil
communication (human)
decision making
managers
diagram
Spain
communication
farmers
degradation
Managers
Decision making
Communication
testing

Keywords

  • cognitive maps
  • mindset
  • mentality
  • behaviour change
  • technology adoption

Cite this

Using mental models to understand soil management. / Prager, Katrin (Corresponding Author); Curfs, Michiel.

In: Soil Use & Management, Vol. 32, No. 1, 03.2016, p. 36-44.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Prager, Katrin ; Curfs, Michiel. / Using mental models to understand soil management. In: Soil Use & Management. 2016 ; Vol. 32, No. 1. pp. 36-44.
@article{c7776f8e54f24ca0a1c84cd03b203375,
title = "Using mental models to understand soil management",
abstract = "Soil degradation continues to be a serious issue. This is partially due to the specific characteristics of soil and degradation, many of which are linked to how humans perceive their environment. How a person perceives soil degradation will influence how they interpret this phenomenon, what attitude they adopt towards it, and how they will ultimately decide to act. Mental models are understood as constructed by the human mind as a result of perception, experience, attitudes and knowledge, and the comprehension of discourse. Applying the concept of mental models allows an understanding of land manager decision-making with regard to soil management, linking perceptions, attitudes and beliefs with behaviour. We show how mental models can help identify consistencies and differences of perceptions of different soil-related stakeholders, such as farmers, scientists, administrators, advisors and policy makers. In a practical test of the concept, a diagram-based representation of mental models was applied in south-western Spain. We found that the occurrences of overlap in the mental model of soil-related stakeholders are the areas where communication should focus. It is in these areas where strategies to address the problem of soil degradation can be developed.",
keywords = "cognitive maps, mindset, mentality, behaviour change, technology adoption",
author = "Katrin Prager and Michiel Curfs",
note = "Funded by: LEDDRA. Grant Number: 243857 and Scottish Government's RESAS. Grant Number: 2011‐16",
year = "2016",
month = "3",
doi = "10.1111/sum.12244",
language = "English",
volume = "32",
pages = "36--44",
journal = "Soil Use & Management",
issn = "0266-0032",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Using mental models to understand soil management

AU - Prager, Katrin

AU - Curfs, Michiel

N1 - Funded by: LEDDRA. Grant Number: 243857 and Scottish Government's RESAS. Grant Number: 2011‐16

PY - 2016/3

Y1 - 2016/3

N2 - Soil degradation continues to be a serious issue. This is partially due to the specific characteristics of soil and degradation, many of which are linked to how humans perceive their environment. How a person perceives soil degradation will influence how they interpret this phenomenon, what attitude they adopt towards it, and how they will ultimately decide to act. Mental models are understood as constructed by the human mind as a result of perception, experience, attitudes and knowledge, and the comprehension of discourse. Applying the concept of mental models allows an understanding of land manager decision-making with regard to soil management, linking perceptions, attitudes and beliefs with behaviour. We show how mental models can help identify consistencies and differences of perceptions of different soil-related stakeholders, such as farmers, scientists, administrators, advisors and policy makers. In a practical test of the concept, a diagram-based representation of mental models was applied in south-western Spain. We found that the occurrences of overlap in the mental model of soil-related stakeholders are the areas where communication should focus. It is in these areas where strategies to address the problem of soil degradation can be developed.

AB - Soil degradation continues to be a serious issue. This is partially due to the specific characteristics of soil and degradation, many of which are linked to how humans perceive their environment. How a person perceives soil degradation will influence how they interpret this phenomenon, what attitude they adopt towards it, and how they will ultimately decide to act. Mental models are understood as constructed by the human mind as a result of perception, experience, attitudes and knowledge, and the comprehension of discourse. Applying the concept of mental models allows an understanding of land manager decision-making with regard to soil management, linking perceptions, attitudes and beliefs with behaviour. We show how mental models can help identify consistencies and differences of perceptions of different soil-related stakeholders, such as farmers, scientists, administrators, advisors and policy makers. In a practical test of the concept, a diagram-based representation of mental models was applied in south-western Spain. We found that the occurrences of overlap in the mental model of soil-related stakeholders are the areas where communication should focus. It is in these areas where strategies to address the problem of soil degradation can be developed.

KW - cognitive maps

KW - mindset

KW - mentality

KW - behaviour change

KW - technology adoption

U2 - 10.1111/sum.12244

DO - 10.1111/sum.12244

M3 - Article

VL - 32

SP - 36

EP - 44

JO - Soil Use & Management

JF - Soil Use & Management

SN - 0266-0032

IS - 1

ER -