Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub
    Author(s): Stephen P. Prisley; Michael J. Mortimer
    Date: 2004
    Source: Forest Ecology and Management. 198: 89-103.
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Northeastern Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (152.6 KB)


    Forest modeling has moved beyond the realm of scientific discovery into the policy arena. The example that motivates this review is the application of models for forest carbon accounting. As negotiations determine the terms under which forest carbon will be accounted, reported, and potentially traded, guidelines and standards are being developed to ensure consistency, accuracy, transparency and verifiability. To date, these guidelines have focused on definitions, data, and reporting, not models. The goal of this paper is to synthesize literature that may inform the development of guidelines for the application of models in areas with policy implications, such as forest carbon accounting.We discuss validation, verification, and evaluation as applied to modeling, and review common components of model evaluation. Peer review, quantitative analysis of model results, and sensitivity analysis are the most widely used approaches to model evaluation. US judicial and legislative perspectives on criteria for model acceptability are summarized.

    Publication Notes

    • Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
    • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
    • During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
    • Please contact Sharon Hobrla, if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Prisley, Stephen P.; Mortimer, Michael J. 2004. A synthesis of literature on evaluation of models for policy applications, with implications for forest carbon accounting. Forest Ecology and Management. 198: 89-103.


    Google Scholar


    forest models, validation, verification, sensitivity analysis

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page