Improving the flow of scientific information across the interface of forest science and policy

Linda A. Joyce
2003 Forest Policy and Economics  
The ever-expanding knowledge base of forest science is a challenge for scientists, the public and decision-makers to incorporate into forest policy and management. Scientific assessments have been used as a process to synthesize information on a variety of resource issues, including climatic change. As a process of communication, three attributes of assessments, assessment capacity, stakeholder participation, and articulation of uncertainty, can strongly influence the ability of the assessments
more » ... to communicate scientific information. The institutional structure of the USDA Forest Service to conduct resource assessments has allowed a sustained effort to conduct periodic synthesis of scientific information and to address new policy issues, such as climate change. The US National Assessment on Climate Variability and Change engaged diverse stakeholders, such as public and private decision-makers, resource and environmental managers, the general public and scientific experts in a broad national and regional dialogue about changes in climate, their impacts, and what can be done to adapt to an uncertain and continuously changing climate. Both the National Assessment and the Third Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change incorporated a language of uncertainty to describe consensus of the scientific community on the report's conclusions. These attributes are important elements of improving the flow of information across the science-policy interface. ᮊ
doi:10.1016/s1389-9341(03)00033-9 fatcat:3w7zmokw3jeblk3yuxq3xhyrnm