Box 82 Six steps of indicator building

1. Agree on a story.

2. List policy questions.

3. Select indicators (ideal and actual).

4. Define and compile data.

5. Interpret indicators.

6. Modify, adapt, update, and iterate conclusions. Source: EEA.

addition, the story should describe relevant scientific knowledge, including factors such as multicausality, critical thresholds, and uncertainties.

To develop ownership and increase relevance, the story must be developed with all relevant stakeholders. The design of the story involves the description of the stakeholders' views about the issue, the limits of the problem being addressed, and how they think it should be solved. Such an approach brings out the hopes, beliefs and ethical standpoints of the stakeholders, including those of the policymakers who design the policies that the indicators are intended to track, improving the relevance of the resulting indicators. An example storyline for the environment—transport problem is summarized in Box 8.3.

Once a clear story is established, it is important to make explicit the relevant policymakers' questions. Ideally there should be a balance in questions related to causes, effects, and solutions to the problem. Box 8.4 lists the main questions of the environment—transport storyline.

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