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How can we reveal power and bias when synthesising evidence for policy?

In a letter published today in Nature, STEPS co-director Andy Stirling and Clive Mitchell (Scottish Natural Heritage) suggest that ‘open-mindedness’ is a key principle in making evidence synthesis more useful for policy. From pesticides to epidemics or obesity, there is often demand for analysis of a vast range of evidence to help inform decision-making and…

Andy Stirling

Video: Andy Stirling on Grand Challenges, interdisciplinary research and transformations

The Institute of Liberal Arts and Sciences have published video of a lecture (40 min) by STEPS co-director Andy Stirling at Keele University on 1 November 2017. In the lecture, Prof Stirling explains how knowledge and action for sustainability is framed around ‘Grand Challenges’, and the role of interdisciplinary research. In the pursuit of control…

Andy Stirling

Andy Stirling, STEPS co-director, made Academy of Social Sciences Fellow

Professor Andy Stirling has been conferred the award of Fellow by the Academy of Social Sciences (ACSS), who announced the news on Friday 31 March 2017.

Civilising Hypocrisies and Fundamental Questions: on “emancipating transformations”

This week Manchester Tyndall Centre hosted a provocative and highly interesting seminar. Professor Andy Stirling, who spent the 80s in the trenches for Greenpeace, had schlepped up to deliver a seminar on “Emancipating Transformations.” What they? Read on for an (almost) blow by blow account. [My multiple two centses are in square brackets like these.]

Iran’s environmental crisis: why we should be mindful of depicting a dystopian future

In our age of computers and satellites, our sense of both urgency and fear has become central to the process of addressing environmental challenges. This sense of necessity for urgent action can be seen in calls to tackle climate change, biodiversity loss and extinctions, ocean acidification, etc. It comes as no surprise that addressing them…

Andy Stirling on BBC Radio 4’s ‘Moral Maze’: Is Science Morally Neutral?

STEPS co-director Andy Stirling was one of the ‘witnesses’ in an interesting debate on the Moral Maze last night, discussing ethics and democracy in science. (Update, 14 March 2016: Andy has written a post for the Guardian’s ‘Political Science’ blog reflecting on biases around science & technology discussions in the UK.) Alongside its many benefits,…

Responses to frequently asked questions on genetically-modified crops and development

GM Rice / BASF / Flickr Creative Commons By Andy Stirling, co-director of the STEPS Centre   Questions are never far from the headlines about how the world can farm more fairly, sustainably and productively. What is meant by these qualities varies greatly – including differing ways to raise income for poor farmers, improve nutrition, reduce environmental…

Fear of flying: the uneasy marriage of numbers and risk

STEPS Centre co-director Prof Andy Stirling has written an article for the Guardian‘s new blog, Political Science, about how using numbers to communicate risk can create a false sense of certainty. The new Guardian blog offers insights into the interaction of science and politics, with guest posts and regular contributions from Alice Bell, Kieron Flanagan,…

New Andy Stirling presentations

A collection of presentations recently given by STEPS co-director Andy Stirling on: civil society and the direction of innovation; the implications of uncertainty for science policy; knowledge and innovation implications for climate geo-engineering; and social, ethical and cultural challenges for security research.

A MANIFESTO TO MAKE INNOVATION DELIVER FOR DEVELOPMENT

Billions spent yet millions live in poverty Radical change needed in science, technology & innovation Out-of-date innovation policy is undermining unprecedented opportunities for development aid to improve the environment and combat global poverty, according to a new Manifesto published today (15 June 2010). We live in an era of rapid scientific advance yet poverty is…