Scientists, environmental managers and science journalists: A hierarchical model to comprehend and enhance the environmental decision-making process

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Perspectives in Ecology and Conservation, ISSN: 2530-0644, Vol: 16, Issue: 4, Page: 169-176

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Érika Garcez da Rocha; Pedro Luís Bernardo da Rocha
Elsevier BV
Environmental Science
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The distinct backgrounds of stakeholders may hinder proper communication throughout the environmental decision-making process. Several research traditions have discussed these challenges in communication, among them: research-implementation gap, environmental/ecological literacy, and science journalism (considering science journalists as connectors among stakeholders). Further, the KVP model, which focuses on the teaching and learning process of science, propose to analyze the process among distinct actors in the educational system by considering conceptions to be interactions among knowledge (K), social practices (P), and values (V). Therefore, we integrate these three traditions and using the KVP model, we present a hierarchical model to understand how stakeholders build integrated conceptions. Our model contemplates bottom-up relationships among scientists, environmental managers, science journalists, and others citizens in a context of top-down institutional constraints. In addition, we evaluate the emphasis that is put on knowledge, values, and social practices in these three traditions. Our model highlights that the literature tends to picture the relevant influence between groups as unidirectional, from scientist to other actors and that communication is primarily based on knowledge, with little acknowledgment of values and social practices. Collaborative action may overcome these shortcomings, however, because these actions are constrained by institutions, changes in these policies are paramount to pave the societal road toward effective decisions.