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  Step I: Descriptors
  Step II: Variants
  Step III: Cross-Impact-Matrix 
  Step IV: Evaluation

CIB Analysis - Step-by-Step

Step III: Cross-Impact-Matrix

The interdependencies between the descriptors regulate which combinations of the various descriptors can be regarded as consistent scenarios. To introduce the interdependencies into the analysis, qualitative information is collected with the help of literature studies or expert elicitation on whether it would promote or hinder development x for descriptor X if development y were to occur for descriptor Y. This information is then coded on an integer scale as follows:¹

   -3: strongly restricting influence
   -2: moderately restricting influence
   -1: weakly restricting influence
    0: no influence
   +1: weakly promoting influence
   +2: moderately promoting influence
   +3: strongly promoting influence.

Only direct influences are to be indicated. The resulting indirect influences are constructed by the CIB automatically during the evaluation. In the example, the qualitative observation could have been found in the research literature that the occurrence of social unrest strongly motivates many people to withdraw primarily to the family as the closest social bond. The cross-impact of [E3 Social cohesion: Unrest] on [F3 Social values: Family] is therefore +3.

The compilation of the cross-impact data on all influence relationships between the various descriptors forms the cross-impact matrix. For the example 'Somewhereland', it could look as follows.²

The cross-impact variant discussed above for the effect of unrest on family orientation is shown in the highlighted cell at the bottom right.

¹ Other evaluation intervals can also be used for the evaluation scale, e.g. [-2...+2] or [-4...+4]. However, the interval [-3...+3] is most frequently used in CIB practice.
² As each country has its own individual circumstances, it is to be expected that different cross-impact values would have to be applied for describing an existing country.

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