Unit of Spatial Planning


Regional Development - SPReD

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ULYSSES: Urban Life Styles, Sustainability and Integrated Environmental Assessment, DG XII



Human Dimensions of Environmental Change

Duration: 1996-1999

Scientific Responsible: Prof. Maria Giaoutzi (giaoutsi@central.ntua.gr)

The Project Objectives

The European research project ULYSSES aims to bridge the gap between environmental science and democratic policy making in the climate domain. Policy makers dealing with complex environmental problems need knowledge from environmental science as well as from social sciences to back up their decisions. Integrated Assessment (IA) research aims at providing useful overviews of relevant problems and elements of possible solutions for this purpose.

Science can provide neither unique descriptions nor unique solutions for truly complex environmental problems. On the other hand, citizens are used to deal with a variety of conflicting yet legitimate interpretations in democracy, which is basically government by public debate. ULYSSES studies judgements of informed citizens on climate policy and makes these judgements available to policy makers. As a support in this process the citizens are given access to state-of-the-art computer models on environment change. In such a situation assessments can improve both in quality and in political relevance by combining expert knowledge with public participation.


1. Darmstadt University of Technology, (TUD), Institute for Sociology, Germany (Project Leader)
2. Joint Research Centre - Commission of the European Communities, Ispra, (JRC) - Institute for Systems, Informatics and Safety, Italy
3. Centre for the Study of Environmental Change Lancaster University, (CSEC), United Kingdom
4. Instituto de Estudios Sociales Avancados de Cataluna, (IESA), Spain
5. Stockholm Environment Institute, (SEI), Sweden
6. National Technical University of Athens, (NTUA), Greece
7. Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, (PIK), Germany
8. International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, (IIASA), Austria
9. Research Methods Consultancy, (RMC), United Kingdom
10. Swiss Federal Institute for Environmental Science and Technology, Duebendorf, (EAWAG), Switzerland



Doctoral Thesis

(Supervised by Prof. Maria Giaoutzi)

1996 - Stratigea Anastasia, "The Impacts of ICTs on Spatial Restructuring", NTUA.

2005 - Oludolapo O. Akinyosoye - Gbonda , "SYDEPETR - SYstem to support DEcision for the PETRoleum mining sector: The Niger Delta Region", NTUA.

2007 - Andreatou Aggeliki, "Decision Support Systems for Sustainable Development", NTUA.

2008 - Papakonstantinou Dimitrios, "Closed ICTs Networks in the Management of Tourism Product for Sustainable Development", NTUA.

2011 - Grammatikogiannis Elias, "Decision Making Systems for Public Participation in Regional Planning", NTUA.