Orsi, F., D. Geneletti and A.C. Newton
This investigation aimed to verify whether this might be achieved through the elicitation of experts’ opinion, when considering biodiversity conservation as the main objective of restoration. A Delphi process was performed, aimed at defining the key ecological criteria and a broad set of indicators. 389 criteria and 669 related indicators were provided in total and grouped into clusters relating to individual criteria. A total of 20 criteria referred to the need for restoration and 18 to its feasibility. In the second round of the Delphi process, 8 definitive criteria were identified along with some 90 related indicators. Finally, a face-to-face meeting was conducted to show how ready-to-use C&I can be obtained for application to a specific context starting from the Delphi’s results. The study highlights the potential value of combining the Delphi process and face-to-face meetings for identifying practically applicable C&I for planning ecological restoration. However, the diversity of views identified within a single group of stakeholders suggests that the development of a generally applicable set of C&I for forest restoration will be difficult to achieve in practice.