The Science-Policy Interface: Society and Research Structures

Policy of ecosystems

The relation between ecosystem sciences and politics will be analyzed based on current theories on scientific knowledge transfer and science-policy interfaces. It will be shown that a successful application of scientific ecosystem knowledge in society needs some important conditions that can be analyzed and evaluated by using political scientific methods and theories. Based on public policy analysis the importance of political actors, institutions and instruments for the utilization of ecosystem knowledge in society will be demonstrated in a second part of the course. We will train students in modern research on the science-policy interface and public policy analysis for a better understanding of the relationship between scientific knowledge production on ecosystems and conditions under which this knowledge can be utilized in society and in politics.

Research Structures and Organizations

The Research Community: Structure and Organization

Universities and large research institutions are complex organizations. We will describe and discuss the structure of these organizations with emphasis on an understanding of the infrastructures necessary for successful research. Leading research in molecular sciences and ecology is conducted by research groups of different sizes which interact in numerous ways with other teams. The structure of universities, other research institutes, and their funding bodies is of crucial importance to provide the necessary infrastructure for research. We will compare the structure of the research community in Germany with other countries, and we will discuss ongoing changes in the system. This is an interactive submodule comprising lectures, invited presentations by external speakers, seminars, and presentations by students. Discussions will be helpful for students to better understand the role of different ‘players’ in science, and to better plan their own research career.

Fig. 1: In Göttingen, the Göttingen Research Council (GRC) coordinates cooperation between research institutes and the university
Göttingen Research Council (GRC) Graphik