‘Managing Risk and Increasing the Robustness of Invasive Species Eradication Programs’, Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, 2015, 2(3), 485-493.
Invasive species eradication programs can fail by applying management strategies that are not robust to potentially large but non- quantified risks. A more robust strategy can succeed over a larger range of possible values for non-quantified risk. This form of robust- ness analysis is often not undertaken in eradi- cation program evaluations. The main non- quantified risk initially facing Australia’s fire ant eradication program was that the invasion had spread further than expected. Earlier consideration of this risk could have led to a more robust strategy involving a larger area managed in the program’s early stages. This strategy could potentially have achieved eradication at relatively low cost without sig- nificantly increasing known and quantified risks. Our findings demonstrate that focusing on known and quantifiable risks can increase the vulnerability of eradication programs to known but non-quantified risks. This high- lights the importance of including robustness to potentially large but non-quantified risks as a mandatory criterion in evaluations of inva- sive species eradication programs.
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