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Integrated assessment of agricultural systems: a component - based framework for the European Union (Seamless)

  • Ittersum, M. van
  • Ewert, F.
  • Heckelei, T.
  • Wery, J.
  • Alkan Olsson, J.
  • Andersen, E.S.
  • Bezlepkina, I.
  • Brouwer, F.
  • Donatelli, M.
  • Flichman, G.
  • Olsson, L.
  • Rizzoli, A.E.
  • Wal, T. van der
  • Wien, J.E.
  • Wolf, J.
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2008
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Agricultural systems continuously evolve and are forced to change as a result of a range of global and local driving forces This paper presents the rationale, design and illustration of a component-based framework for agricultural systems (SEAMLESS Integrated Framework) to assess, ex-ante, agricultural and agri-environmental policies and technologies across a range of scales, from field–farm to region and European Union, as well as some global interactions. We have opted for a framework to link individual model and data components and a software infrastructure that allows a flexible (re-)use and linkage of components. The paper outlines the software infrastructure, indicators and model and data components. The illustrative example assesses effects of a trade liberalisation proposal on EU’s agriculture and indicates how SEAMLESS addresses the four identified challenges for integrated assessment tools, i.e., linking micro and macro analysis, assessing economic, environmental, social and institutional indicators, (re-)using standalone model components for field, farm and market analysis and their conceptual and technical linkage.

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