Critical Systems Thinking for the Facilitation of Conservation Planning in Philippine Coastal Management

R.K. Larsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


In Critical Systems Thinking, the notion of boundary judgements represents a constructionist view on knowing as the bounding of components of reality into knowable objects. Cognitive boundary judgements determine observations (facts) and evaluations (values), which knowers appreciate and act in relation to. Werner Ulrich’s method of dialogical boundary critique and the framework of Critical Systems Heuristics (CSH) are intended to enable citizen participation in Western democracies through acknowledgement of legitimate competencies in public and corporate dialogues. This paper investigates the application of this methodology in Philippine coastal resource management. The conclusions are based on stakeholder-based action planning carried out between November 2007 and May 2008 in the Babuyan group of islands, bounded by the Balintang and Babuyan Channels. It argues that dialogical boundary critique requires significant adaptation if it is to provide a liberating language for participants in Philippine resource management dilemmas shaped by multiple and conflicting knowledge claims under conditions of significant controversy
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-76
JournalSystems Research and Behavioral Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • marine protected areas
  • resource-management
  • water
  • sustainability
  • policy

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