On January 18th 2024, I presented a seminar as part of the CCRI seminar series entitled “Participatory Governance for Scaling-up Nature-based Solutions: Social Science Insights from a fast-paced, impact-focused interdisciplinary project.”.

In the seminar, I discussed how, within the context of dual biodiversity and climate crises, how Nature-based Solutions (NbS) address societal challenges with multiple benefits for people and nature. Advocates argue that NbS fundamentally have ecological and social goals, and as such have attracted considerable attention from national to international scales. However, there were concerns about the potential exclusion and marginalisation of local communities and other groups. Participatory and democratic approaches are often promoted as an antidote to these issues, ensuring more equitable and inclusive decision-making outcomes.

The seminar explored how different framings and messages around NbS can work to open up and close down opportunities for participation, and the implications of this for delivering multiple socio-economic and ecological outcomes in a way that is equitable and sustainable. It presented insights from a fast-paced, solutions-focused interdisciplinary project at the University of Oxford on Scaling-up Nature-based Solutions in the UK. This work was part of a larger NERC-funded project called the Agile Initiative, aiming to revolutionize how research responds to urgent global environmental policy and practice challenges, and the Leverhulme Centre for Nature Recovery. In particular, I focused on the social science contributions, reflecting on also the lessons learned from contributing social science expertise to a fast-paced, solutions-oriented interdisciplinary project at the science-policy interface.

Watch the seminar on YouTube and download the PowerPoint slides below.

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