At Springer Nature, we are committed to bridging the gap between research and policymaking by helping researchers increase the societal impact of their work. As part of our SDG15 hub launch, dedicated to life on land, we asked several experts how they work to make sure their related research is reaching those that need it most to make urgent decisions when it comes to the future of our planet.
My research is on climate change adaptation, coastal planning and sustainable cities.
Societal impact is very important to my research. In the Australian context we have experienced extreme climate events in recent years including prolonged drought, extreme wildfire, floods and coastal storms. The impact on communities has been very substantial. Some coastal rural communities have experienced a number of events and are now suffering from cumulative impacts. They need evidence based help with recovery and ‘building back better’.
The most effective way of communicating research is through national and international media, particularly linking up with leading science reporters. A recent example can be found here, where scientists in Australia warn about rebuilding neighborhoods in ‘at risk’ areas.
I generally seek to reach leading decision makers influencing budgets and public policy outcomes i.e. impact. Increasing broader community understanding of the issues is also very important.
Contribute to reputable blogs such as The Conversation and Nature discussions and occasionally write opinion pieces too. This way you will become well known in the public sphere which will lead to invitations to become involved in higher level discussions and research collaborations.
About Barbara Norman