Social Science Knowledge Base on Environmental Change

Recognizing the role of values, beliefs and worldviews in the perception of environmental risks and capacity to adapt, understanding changing dynamics between individuals and groups in networked societies, acknowledging the role of interests, identities and power in developing effective responses to environmental change, and many other important questions about environment and society relationships call for the social sciences to take the lead in developing a new science of climate change. An integrated approach that brings the social and natural sciences together to jointly frame, design, execute and apply research on climate change is required, along with broader and more inclusive research agenda that works “with society” and not only “for society”.

Informed by these necessities, UNESCO works on enhancing the role of diverse stakeholders in the co-production of environmental change knowledge and on ensuring successful integration of social and natural sciences through:

  1. Formulation of environmental change research agenda for the social sciences;
  2. Identification of relevant policy approaches and effective interfaces in this area of work; and
  3. Design of innovative mechanisms for global coordination and research funding in this area.

See also

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