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Paul Sutherland

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Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) for Land Use Diversification tool

This Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) tool was tested in a project with farmers in the Upper Taieri Wai catchment group, which identified alternative land uses for diversification (not just limited to agriculture) that fit within their current farming system. 

MCDM is becoming increasingly popular in exploring land-use options, taking into consideration multiple criteria. Most MCDM tools available are either research models or licensed software which can be time-consuming to use. This MCDM spreadsheet tool is a relatively quick and simple process to work with farmers to explore land use alternatives. This has been found to be popular with farmers.

MCDM is a structured, objective process, supported with a software tool, to help:

  • identify the ‘best’ ranked alternative(s)
  • explore and learn about a decision
  • understand own and others’ viewpoints
  • make a decision transparent
  • communicate a decision

This spreadsheet-based tool can be used for decisions with multiple, conflicting criteria which are measured in different units.

For Windows users:

For Mac users:


For instructions, watch this video to see the tool in action and find PDF instructions here.

Click here for advice on which file to use.

If you have any questions please contact Liz Dooley.

Source: Taieri Land Use Diversification Opportunities Project:

Projects which produced this output

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