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Sciencewise Sustainable Participation paper used in vision paper on low carbon dialogue in Scotland

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A new report, published in September 2015, describes the work of the R&Dialogue project and refers extensively to the Sciencwise paper on Sustainable Participation, by Jason Chilvers.

R&Dialogue is an EU-funded project with 17 partners working in 20 countries to promote an inclusive, democratic, and transparent dialogue on low-carbon issues between research and civil society stakeholders. The project is founded on the rationale that understanding and acknowledging diverse viewpoints and interests – and bridging the gap between technological and societal action – is a crucial component of developing effective and implementable low-carbon solutions. The overall goal for R&Dialogue was to facilitate this dialogue and to identify future actions that would help address some of the key challenges faced in transitioning to a low-carbon society across Europe.

The UK R&Dialogue partners at the University of Edinburgh led the project covered by this report. The work focused on a ‘design thinking’ framework, leading to a vision and action plan. The report includes a section on Reflections on Dialogue, which references the Sciencewise paper, as well as linked work by Phil MacNaghten, Jack Stilgoe and Kathy Sykes – all of whom are closely linked to Sciencewise (Kathy Sykes and Jack Stilgoe are on the Sciencewise Steering Group).

The report accepts the leadership position of the UK on public dialogue (citing the Sciencewise paper), but raises questions about the balance between process and outcome (also citing the Sciencewise paper), the limitations to and challenges for public dialogue, and the role of ‘design thinking’ in facilitating valuable exchanges, and generating low carbon visions and actions plans for Scotland at several scales.  

Lessons for low carbon dialogue. Vision Paper and Action Plan: Scotland, UK. By Emily Creamer, Simon Shackley, Carly Marynard and Eugenia Jain. Published by R&Dialogue, The Hague.

‘Sustainable participation? Mapping out and reflecting on the field of public dialogue on science and technology’, by Jason Chilvers. Published by Sciencewise in 2010.