The response of scientists to deliberative public engagement: a UK perspective.
In: Participatory approaches to science and technology (PATH), 4-7 June 2006, Macauley Institute, Edinburgh.
The purpose of this paper is to explore an important issue that appears to be somewhat neglected in work on deliberative and inclusive processes (DIPs) in environment and technology policy-making: the response of experts, especially scientists, to DIPs. Information in this area is clearly important to the future success of DIPs, in terms of identifying the barriers and opportunities that are presented by experts. More broadly, information about the responses of experts to DIPs is important in terms of the impact that increasingly prevalent DIPs might have on wider expert communities. As might be expected in an area that is somewhat neglected, the empirical evidence can be described as inconclusive. Some evidence is not particularly encouraging while other evidence is more positive. In the paper, I will explore some of this evidence and make conjectural comments on the implications that it might have for successful DIPs. Future research strategies for filling this empirical gap will also be explored.
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