Towards effective science diplomacy practice: POLICY BRIEF #2, JANUARY 2020

Ewert J. Aukes*, Gonzalo Ordonez Matamoros, Stefan Kuhlmann, Sanaz Honarmand Ebrahimi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional

Abstract

Grand societal challenges require collective action within and across national borders. Effective action is expected from Europe and it requires targeted inter-governmental and diplomatic efforts and the mobilisation of appropriate scientific knowledge. Science Diplomacy is a promising mechanism to address these grand societal challenges. We understand science diplomacy generally as collaborations between stakeholders from science, policy and diplomacy, which involve various governmental or diplomatic organisations as well as non-governmental scientific organisations. The complexity arising from the existing variety of mechanisms and stakeholders precludes a clear-cut definition of who should ‘do’ science diplomacy in what way. And many stakeholders that could be labelled ‘science diplomacy organisation’ would not do so themselves. This presents challenges for organising the governance of science diplomacy. We suggest here that governing mechanisms for science diplomacy in Europe must observe four premises to be effective. These premises include (a) grand societal challenges require both diplomatic efforts and science-based knowledge, (b) sciencebased knowledge production is diverse and evolving, (c) diplomacy means reconciling a variety of interests, and (d) Science Diplomacy requires combined science and diplomacy literacy. These premises set the stage for the development of governance mechanisms for science diplomacy. Taken seriously, they lead to governance practices that do not pre-define what science diplomacy is, but give interested stakeholders the guidance they need to develop effective science diplomacy mechanisms themselves. This will be presented in a later policy recommendation brief.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationVienna
PublisherS4D4C
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020

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