The Global Science Partnership
We are delighted to be launching a key, strategic global project at COP27 that aims to catalyse action and drive change through evidence-based science engagement and deliberative, citizen engagement. Evidence-based engagement with diverse publics and impacted stakeholders on a complex and future facing issue is important because it ensures more inclusive and effective policy that considers a wide range of stakeholders’ values and needs. Furthermore, the project is facilitating the development of a public mandate for climate action which is key for delivering effective and inclusive change.
This project builds upon the Glasgow Climate Pact, as part of the UK’s COP26 Presidency legacy and climate leadership. The aims are to:
• Advance global knowledge on how best to combine scientific evidence with citizen views and perspectives to inform the development of climate policy.
• Develop a scalable methodology for research and citizen engagement on climate that can be deployed across the world and
• Establish impact and legacy for both climate policy and deliberative engagement globally.
As the video above illustrates, the Global Science Partnership is a partnership of countries
worldwide, which brings together research communities, policymakers, and the public to
develop and pilot an innovative methodology to spark effective and more inclusive climate action. Three pilot countries – Seychelles, Colombia and Kenya are currently working to explore the application of this methodology, sharing learning from the process for wider, global use and impact.
The feedback loops operate across citizen engagement, science and knowledge, and policy making, and the overarching aim of these three strands working together is to contribute towards a global, more effective and just climate transition to a resilient and Net Zero world.
What does success look like? Our approach to learning and developing a scalable methodology
As the pilots progress, research partners Ipsos and Ricardo are gathering learning and evidence about what works on the ground in different countries, to help shape legacy research and materials for a methodology that can be scaled anywhere in the world. We have taken this approach by developing a Theory of Change and undertaking a light touch, formative and summative evaluation. The below diagram illustrates the key success indicators we are measuring progress by:
- Citizens are engaged in climate science and policy, have a greater awareness of the issues, and are more willing to act in relation to the climate agenda.
- Science is better understood and valued by a broader range of stakeholders, including citizens, with climate science built more effectively into the evidence base and public narrative.
- Policymakers have access to better evidence, with an increased understanding of the public’s mindset ultimately shaping more inclusive and effective policy.
What methodology have pilot countries been using to approach these challenges?
Working with different countries, recognising different contexts, scope and challenges, we have identified three key steps in developing and piloting these approaches:
Step 1: Problem definition with policymakers: The methodology starts with policy makers in each country identifying a challenging problem that requires wide societal input, where there is currently a gap in the evidence base. This process also ensures that the issues are defined and led by the countries’ own knowledge and expertise of these issues.
Step 2: Stakeholder input and engagement: Through stakeholder input, the science and other expert and specialist communities are invited to provide and signpost to existing evidence and highlight where further research is needed. This process ensures that a wide range of stakeholders and specialists are bought into the process and help shape the question for definition. At this stage, scientists and policymakers are also engaged in discussions about which issues will require wide societal buy in and public confidence, for effective change.
Step 3: Citizen engagement: Citizens are then engaged in workshops to explore their insights into the challenge, as well as how they are impacted by them. All three perspectives are combined to create policy and research recommendations that have the support of scientists and citizens themselves, while being actively helpful towards policymakers’ current challenges. We see this stage as the final step in the feedback loop that responds to the problem and policy question as defined by policy makers in step 1.