Building local capacity for managing environmental risk: a transferable framework for participatory, place-based, narrative-science knowledge exchange
This paper evaluates a unique, transdisciplinary participatory research and knowledge exchange methodology developed in the Drought Risk and You (DRY) project and offers it as a transferable framework for others engaging stakeholders and systemic connections with environmental risk. Drought in the UK is a complex, diffuse and hidden risk, involving multiple stakeholders and systemic connections across diverse sectors. Historically, drought risk management has been underpinned by specialist science and technology implemented by statutory stakeholders. This paper critically evaluates the social learning from a longitudinal research process that involved co-working with seven river catchment-based, multi-stakeholder groups. The DRY project was a creative experiment in bringing drought science and stories into the same space, aiming to reveal different knowledges—specialist science, practical sector-level insight, and local knowledge—as a new evidence base to support better decision-making in UK drought risk management. An evaluative multi-method research methodology was overlaid on this process, using surveys, within meeting reflective evaluations, and summative semi-structured narrative interviews. This paper reflects on participant experiences of the ‘open’ scientific modelling development, ‘storying’ approaches, and their iterative interaction. It outlines the enablers, inhibitors and required support for this engagement process, which aimed to facilitate integration of different forms of knowledge as evidence, with social and sustainability learning among diverse stakeholders at its core. The process offered opportunity for valuable experiential learning as researchers of the nuanced impacts of intersecting factors on participatory place-based methods. It showed that similar approaches to science-narrative dialogic processes can play out locally to integrate aspects of social and sustainability learning in different ways. This sustainability learning provided a valuable platform for creative multi-stakeholder scenario-ing possible drought futures for increased local climate resilience. It then proposes a transferable research framework that promotes participatory, place-based, narrative-science knowledge exchange for building local capital for managing systemic environmental risk.
DEVELOPING A DROUGHT NARRATIVE RESOURCE IN A MULTI-STAKEHOLDER DECISION-MAKING UTILITY FOR DROUGHT RISK MANAGEMENT
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- Design and Creative Arts
- Creative Arts
Published inSustainability Science
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