Stakeholder dialogue as a communication and negotiation tool in scientific inquiry
A stakeholder dialogue aimed to facilitate the development and dissemination of the ATEAM European vulnerability assessment of global change impacts. This participative experiment constitutes a milestone in integrated ecological modelling. Participating ecosystem managers, sectoral representatives and policy advisers significantly influenced the research content and process. The usefulness of the projects’ outcomes for stakeholders and an evaluation of the dialogue are presented. Three challenges are highlighted. First, the increasing complexity and uncertainty of global change modelling and the multiplication of its results raise the question of how to best communicate modelling outcomes to society. Second, scientifically credible and socially relevant participative research implies the need for transparency in the research process, so that goals, underlying assumptions and methods of scientific inquiry may be adequately scrutinised and debated. Finally, stakeholder dialogues are valuable processes of negotiation, which may help to reconcile the differing needs of fundamental and applied global change sciences.
Keywords: science-stakeholder dialogue, participative research, ecosystem modelling, global change, vulnerability assessment
Communicating Climate Change: Discourses, Mediations and Perceptions
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Centro de Estudos de Comunicação e Sociedade (CECS)
Universidade do Minho