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CRAFT represents a synthesis of three overlapping approaches to managing risks and tradeoffs in natural resource management: 1) ecological risk assessment; 2) decision analysis; and 3) decision protocols. Together, these three approaches provide a flexible framework to support planning, analysis, and decision making in most contexts. Find more in-depth information about ecological risk assessment, decision analysis and Decision Protocol 2.0 in CRAFTiPedia.

Ecological Risk Assessment -According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, ecological risk assessments "systematically evaluate and organize data, information, assumptions, and uncertainties in order to help understand and predict the relationships between stressors and ecological effects in a way that is useful for environmental decision making. An assessment may involve chemical, physical, or biological stressors, and one stressor or many stressors may be considered." (US EPA, 1998).

Decision Analysis -While there are many tools and techniques that fall under the general heading of decision support, the term, decision analysis, is reserved for a set of techniques that explicitly model the relationships between a decision and its likely consequences. The most widely adopted quantitative form of decision analysis is the Bayesian Belief Network.

Decision Protocol 2.0 - As a framework for ecological risk assessment and decision analysis, CRAFT provides detailed guidance through the planning process as well as risk modeling. The CRAFT Wizard is an adaptation of Decision Protocol 2.0 as its framework for ecological risk assessment Berg, et al.1999). The Wizard provides a stepwise, online, interactive, task-oriented process that integrates planning, ecological risk assessment, and decision analysis. Like Decision Protocol 2.0, the Wizard is organized around logical stages of planning: 1) Specifying Objectives; 2) Designing Alternatives; 3) Modeling Effects; and 4) Synthesis.