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Science into policy? Discourse, coastal management and knowledge

journal contribution
posted on 2014-01-01, 00:00 authored by M J Nursey-Bray, J Vince, M Scott, M Haward, Joseph O'Toole, T Smith, N Harvey, B Clarke
The world's coastal resources are under pressure, even more so under climate change with 90% of the world's population living near or along our coastal zone. Ecologically, this zone is also the most productive, and the mainstay of economic livelihoods on a global scale. Managing the coast effectively is crucial, but as an area it remains contested. Despite multiple efforts to manage the coast, it remains a contested space. This paper offers a reflection into the ways in which different discourses influence and impact on one specific dimension of coastal zone management-the transmission of science into the policy domain. Using historical and discourse analysis, we find that the science-policy interface is largely constructed within two knowledge discourses: (i) scientific knowledge and (ii) local knowledge. This arbitrary separation into a binary discursive landscape mitigates against science-policy integration in practice especially given each discourse in itself, encompasses multiple forms of knowledge. We argue that in order to better understand how to build scientific research outputs into policy, decision makers and researchers need to understand how knowledge works in practice, overcome this dichotomous construction of knowledge and specifically, re-construct or transition the notion of 'science as knowledge' into 'all knowledge types' into policy.

History

Journal

Environmental science and policy

Volume

38

Pagination

107 - 119

Publisher

Elsevier

Location

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

ISSN

1462-9011

eISSN

1873-6416

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2014, Elsevier