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  • Opportunities for Greater Public Participation in the Natural Sciences : A Case Study of the Alde and Ore Futures ICZM Project, Suffolk, UK
  • Meistara
  • The discipline of Integrated Coastal Zone Management has the public’s participation in the
    management process at its core, as a way of achieving sustainable management of coastal and
    marine environment. The UK, has to date, neglected this fact which has been to the detriment
    of Suffolk coastline communities and management organisations alike, with disagreements
    and distrust rife between the two societal sectors. The Alde and Futures Project is a new
    ICZM initiative aiming to put right the situation; however, it noticeably lacks participation
    from the wider public. Research was therefore conducted to identify routes for greater public
    participation through the natural sciences. Stakeholders, i.e. management organisations
    conducting research grounded in the natural sciences, are mapped and subsequently
    interviewed using a semi-structured interview format in order to identify their current
    activities, and opportunities and constraints to involving the public in their scientific
    activities. Current efforts to involve the public are identified as pseudo science and
    opportunities to develop genuine public science projects subsequently discussed. It is
    suggested such projects will allow: the public to share the responsibility and privilege of
    managing the coastal and marine environment; allow management organisations to work
    together towards common research goals and hence gain an ecosystem perspective; and
    familiarise local people with the principles of sustainability which are currently known, yet not fully endorsed.

  • 22.6.2010

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