Anne Glover speaks out on scientific advice in Brussels

Prof Anne Glover, former Chief Scientific Adviser to the President of the European Commission, has written a revealing article on the Guardian’s ‘Political Science’ blog about her three years in the post. The article reveals her successes, as well as some of the difficulties and suspicions she faced in a new post within the large…

New Multicriteria Mapping software launched

Multicriteria Mapping (MCM), a new software package to aid decision-making by exploring contrasting perspectives on complex issues, has been launched. MCM was pioneered by STEPS co-director Andy Stirling as a way of ‘opening up’ technical assessment by systematically ‘mapping’ the practical implications of alternative options, knowledge, framings and values. The new software will make MCM…

Urban Futures: Background and research questions

This page provides detail of the background and research questions of the project ‘Risks and Responses to Urban Futures’. For a shorter overview, see the project homepage. Urbanisation creates of new opportunities for many, while also resulting in a dramatic increase in the concentration of poverty and environmental degradation in peri-urban zones. Peri-urban areas, at…

Andy Stirling at events on well-being and research methods

STEPS director Andy Stirling was a speaker at “Let’s Talk Happiness – beyond GDP”, a conference organised by the Various Interests Group of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) last week. The event assessed the state of affairs, democratic challenges and political commitment to developing indicators on well-being and social progress in the context…

Future Earth launches new website

Future Earth, the international hub for research on sustainability, has launched a new website to share news of its events and projects. Future Earth was launched in June 2012 and aims to bring together research on global environmental change from across disciplines, with input from governments, civil society, business and others. STEPS Director Melissa Leach…

From Uncertainty in India to low carbon in Kenya: Our autumn newsletter is out now

Our autumn 2013 newsletter gives a snapshot of a few of the areas we are researching right now.  A new briefing looks at how people deal with uncertainty about climate, disease or natural disasters in India, while new resources highlight pathways of pro-poor energy access in Kenya.  A new policy briefing examines how science and politics must be engaged in a post-2015 framework, while…

Framing impact: a simple word for a complex beast

What is this thing called “impact”? More specifically, what are we talking about when we speak of the non-academic impact of research? In this post I want to explore some of the possible answers to this question, which I’ve been looking at as part of a forthcoming working paper on the ESRC STEPS Centre’s approach…

Could the 3Ds breathe new life into farming systems research?

by Jim Sumberg, STEPS centre research fellow Hans Ruthenberg Hans Ruthenberg’s Farming Systems in the Tropics, first published in 1971, still stands as a classic. Through detailed and systematic treatment of the major tropical farming systems, he demonstrates how – in principle and in practical application – systems theory can be brought to bear on…

SUMMER SCHOOL: “WHAT IS RESEARCH FOR SUSTAINABILITY?”

Participants in the recent STEPS Summer School came to Brighton from all around the world, bringing diverse life experiences and disciplinary perspectives together to learn about, discuss and debate new approaches to research for sustainability. Much of our discussion focused on the importance of encompassing plurality and diversity in both research and policy processes, and…

India / Gates Foundation / Flickr Creative Commons

WELCOME

The STEPS Centre is delighted to have been granted new ESRC funding, running until 2016, following our first five years of research. In this new phase we are launching eight exciting new research projects, a new domain – energy and climate change – and a new area of cross-cutting STEPS work, called methods and methodologies….