Triple exposure photograph with road sign reading 'Autres Directions'

Towards a more convivial politics of science

This is the last in a series of three blog posts by Andy Stirling about the theme of the STEPS Centre for 2019: Uncertainty. In previous blogposts in this series, I argued that not all is as it seems in the politics of incertitude. Deep intractabilities are papered over with the apparently precise language of…

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Politics in the language of uncertainty

This is the first in a series of three blog post about uncertainty by Andy Stirling. The second post is here and the third post is here. Uncertainty is not a condition out there in the world. It is a state of knowledge – deeply embedded and shaped in society. The difference may seem abstract….

Needs of the poorest must be central to tackling antibiotic resistance

by Gerry Bloom and Annie Wilkinson, IDS / STEPS Centre Launched this week is a major report on tackling the growing resistance to antibiotics, published by the UK Government and the Wellcome Trust. We fully support its call for the G20 and the UN to take the lead in building a global coalition for action…

Watch video: ‘India’s Risks’ book launch

You can now watch video of the launch event of the book ‘India’s Risks: Democratizing the Management of Threats to Environment, Health and Values’. The video features contributions from Professor M V Rajeev Gowda, Honorable Member of Parliament and Prof Ian Scoones, STEPS Centre Director. The launch event was held at the British Council in…

‘Negotiating Environmental Change’ now available as an e-book

The 2003 book Negotiating Environmental Change: New Perspectives on Social Science, edited by STEPS director Ian Scoones, Melissa Leach (former director) and Frans Berkhout (Interim Director of Future Earth), has been released as an e-book, with chapters available in digital form from Edward Elgar Publishing. The book includes an opening chapter by the editors, as…

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,…

Sustainable business in India: challenges for Rio+20

By Ian Scoones India has seen unprecedented economic growth in recent years; yet with this comes a growing demand for resources and increased pressure on the environment. But how can we combine business success and broad-based economic growth with environmental sustainability? This is a major challenge for fast-growing emerging economies such as India. As the…

RISKY ADVICE AND UNCERTAINTY

Andy Stirling, STEPS Director and Alister Scott, visiting fellow at SPRU, have an article up at Project Syndicate (and on the Al Jazeera website) on recent technological disasters (Fukushima, BP in Mexico) and how they reflect on the way science is used to support public policy. Why do we seem to be witnessing an increasing…

JAPAN: NEGLECTED NUCLEAR LESSONS

Photo: Screen capture from video of an explosion at the Fukushima Daichi plant in Japan (Reuters) By Andy Stirling, STEPS Centre co-director What lessons can be learned from the tragic calamity in Japan, for global debates about nuclear power? With the situation still unfolding, it is too early and uncertain to conclude with any confidence….

FINDING PATHWAYS IN AN AGE OF ANXIETY

We’re living in an age of anxiety where politicians, policy makers and the public search for solutions to narrowly-defined problems and risks. At the recent CRASSH conference, “Challenging Models in the Face of Uncertainty”, Melissa Leach, STEPS Centre Director, spoke about how this search for solutions can lead to social injustice. She argues for a…