In fairSTREAM, IIASA researchers aim to understand and reconcile issues of fairness. This is a key aspect for managing risks in nexus issues, such as the food-water-biodiversity nexus, where conflicting views on procedural and outcome fairness often remain unresolved and jeopardize finding viable solutions. Addressing these issues is a major challenge that requires the integration of multiple sources of knowledge and the cooperation of many different societal actors.

To support this endeavor IIASA researchers from Equity and Justice (EQU), Water Security (WAT), and Biodiversity, Ecology, and Conservation (BEC) are aligning their expertise in co-designing participatory processes with those in quantitative modelling. To this extent, the researchers will first create a methods toolkit for co-production that explicitly considers procedural and distributional justice. Based on this toolkit we will then design and implement a co-production process, which we will support and upscale by quantifying distributional justice in stakeholder visions for future development of the region. We do so by building a large-scale agent-based model, coupled to a hydrological and biodiversity model, that simulates millions of individual farmers.

Research design

The fairSTREAM project is a methodological meta study reviewing, developing, and integrating soft and hard systems methods for knowledge co-production. Thus, creating novel methodologies is one of the main goals of the project. The main research steps are

  1. systematic review of methods for co-producing knowledge, qualitative systems analysis using both literature and retrospective case studies.
  2. the development of a co-production toolkit comprising systems methods that capture questions of procedural and outcome fairness.
  3. Application of the toolkit by organizing a living lab in the Bhima basin to co-create qualitative future narratives.
  4. The co-production of quantitative future scenarios, followed by modelling exercises in a large-scale coupled ABM, with a particular focus on crop farming and integrating biodiversity considerations.

The fairSTREAM project team

The fairSTREAM project team consists of researchers at SOPPECOM (Society for Promoting Participative Ecosystem Management) and IISER Pune (Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Pune), located in India, and IIASA.

team graphic © fairSTREAM

The fairSTREAM project team.


here we share emerging materials from the project.


5 September 2022: Open-house project meeting

23 November 2021: Kick-off event




27 February 2024

Second stakeholder workshop of the fairSTREAM project

On the 6-7th February 2024, the second workshop of fairSTREAM project was hosted at IISER in Pune, India, bringing together food, water and biodiversity stakeholders from the Upper Bhima Basin. 
workshop picture

27 November 2023

EQU Justice Framework Workshop at IIASA

The Equity and Justice Research Group, in collaboration with the IIASA Strategic Initiative projects fairSTREAM, JustTRans4ALL and TRUST, hosted a Justice Framework Workshop on 16 November at IIASA. 

29 April 2022

FairSTREAM updates

In 2021, the fairSTREAM project was selected as one of the first high impact Strategic Initiatives at IIASA. Below is an update on what the project has achieved to date.