In the wild rice case study, as in any public policy question, it is important to understand who is or could be affected by decisions and actions taken, and who has the power to influence outcomes. Stakeholder analysis helps to identify relevant stakeholders, to differentiate between different categories of stakeholders and to investigate the relationships between the protected area and stakeholders and between stakeholders themselves.The rainbow diagram classifies stakeholders according to the degree they can affect or be affected by a problem or a management action.
Students representing each of the stakeholder groups should determine where on the rainbow diagram they would locate their group, and if they determine that the group should be differentiated, then various subgroups or new groups that the students have identified should be place on the rainbow diagram. Students should explain:
1

Identify

Why did you place the stakeholder group where you did on the diagram?
2

Discuss

The relationships your group has or could have with other relevant stakeholders.
3

Analyze

The power or influence of your group.
References and Tools

How do I conduct a full stakeholder analysis?

If you want to complete a comprehensive stakeholder analysis, the International Institute for Environment and Development has a 24-page overview that can help you think through new angles in conducting a stakeholder analysis for this case. It can also help you think through a real life or work situation that you are currently faced with.

Who should be included in the stakeholder analysis?

Think of all of the players at the local, regional/state and national levels. In working with indigenous cultures, explore clans and other forms of culturally-based leadership roles. Use this checklist to brainstorm options.

What are some ways to brainstorm who may be missing in the stakeholder analysis?

  • Who are potential beneficiaries?
  • Who might be adversely affected?
  • Who has existing rights?
  • Who is likely to be voiceless?
  • Who is likely to resent change and mobilize resistance against it?
  • Who is responsible for intended plans?
  • Who has money, skills or key information?
  • Whose behavior has to change for success?

From: Mayers, J. (2005). Stakeholder power analysis.

What are some best practices in creating a real stakeholder analysis?

  • Allow stakeholders to assist in the identification of other stakeholders
  • Ensure that stakeholders trust the convenor
  • Enable dialogue, not a one-way information feed
  • Ensure parties are sufficiently prepared and briefed to have well-informed opinions and decisions
  • Involve stakeholders in defining the terms of engagement
  • Allow stakeholders to voice their views without restriction and fear of penalty
  • Include a public disclosure and feedback process

From: Mayers, J. (2005). Stakeholder power analysis. International Institute for Environment and Development.

Stakeholders Across Cultures

Be aware that some cultures may include future generations, ancestors, religious/spiritual figures, spirits, and non-human entities as core stakeholders to consider and seek guidance from. How can you identify what/who all the stakeholders in this case study may be?

View Stakeholder Perspectives

Read the public’s comments on the proposed changes to the MPCA’s sulfate ruling.

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