Science-based Stakeholder Dialogue for Environmental Policy Implementation

Alice Dantas Brites, Kaline De Mello, Paulo André Tavares, Jean Paul Metzger, Ricardo Ribeiro Rodrigues, Paulo Guilherme Molin, Luís Fernando Guedes Pinto, Carlos Alfredo Joly, João Francisco Adrien Fernandes, Frederico Soares Machado, Eduardo Trani, Gerd Sparovek

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Science-based stakeholder dialogue is a strategy to bring science closer to decision-making with increasing importance for the design of environmental policies. The need for such an approximation has been stressed, but documented implementations are rare. We present our experience of developing a science-based dialogue for the Brazilian Forest Code implementation and share the lessons learned. We departed from a mix of participatory methods to conduct six meetings with stakeholders. During the process, we were able to reduce the gap between science and practice, meeting stakeholders' expectations and increasing the accessibility of scientific information. Avoiding falling back to top-down science and keeping stakeholders' participation constancy were challenges faced. Despite the project achievements, important scientific outcomes were disregarded by higher instances of decision-making. Thus, although we were able to start the dialogue successfully, we also come across the fact that external political factors impaired its reach. By reporting our experience, we expect to help to establish science-based dialogues applied to environmental policy implementation, narrowing the science-practice gap and contributing to more effective environmental policies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-235
Number of pages11
JournalConservation and Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes


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