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Topic: Research Needs for Conservation Policy and Resource Management
Meeting dates: December 4-6, 2017
Location: NIMBioS at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Paul Armsworth, NIMBioS, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville
Charles Sims, Economics, Baker Center for Public Policy, Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville
Michael Blum, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville
Objectives: Conservation and natural resource governance challenges in Tennessee and the broader Southern Appalachian region are expected to escalate as trends in global change continue to unfold. Are existing collaborative research-practice networks capable of meeting current and future governance challenges? Both basic science agencies and institutions that foster knowledge-exchange are facing ever more scrutiny about their effectiveness and societal relevance. Developing evidence-based approaches for assessing and improving the impact of research in support of practitioner constituencies can help address mounting concerns. Some models of knowledge co-production in conservation and natural resource management work better than others and identifying and replicating the successes achieved in other research-to-practice networks, such as agricultural extension services, could prove transformative. Doing so will provide a key step towards ensuring that policy-makers and practitioners receive the research support needed to inform decision-making in the region.
This Working Group will examine how well the research needs of the Tennessee and Southern Appalachia conservation policy and practitioner communities are being met, with the ultimate goal of enhancing the linkages between research and practice. The group brings together a mixture of academic researchers and practitioners, including many drawn from "boundary" organizations active in translating research for practice. Particular attention will be given to adaptation science and to the ability of the research community to mobilize effectively following shocks or disturbances.
This Working Group is supported by the US Department of Interior Southeast Climate Science Center and hosted by NIMBioS.
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An open panel discussion was held at 3:45 p.m. Monday, Dec. 4 in Hallam Auditorium, Claxton 206, on the topic
Enhancing Collaborations Between Environmental Researchers and Stakeholders in Tennessee and the Southern Appalachians.
The panel included presentations from DOI's newly renewed Southeast Climate Science Center, in which UT is a collaborator, and from a range of practitioner organizations in the region (USFS, NPS, TNC, etc.) about collaborative opportunities. It also included discussions about potential funding mechanisms and other opportunities that exist to support such collaborations.