Understanding power dynamics in stakeholder participation: integrating theory and practice for effective biodiversity conservation
The complex nature of biodiversity conservation has led to increased stakeholder engagement through participatory processes, but often without a clear understanding of how or if they lead to stronger or more sustainable biodiversity outcomes. Recent studies highlight the urgent need for a more comprehensive understanding of the multiple dimensions of power that pervade such processes, and how this understanding can lead to improved processes and biodiversity conservation.
Based on a transdisciplinary approach, POWERBIODIV will address the existing gap in understanding linkages between power dynamics and improved stakeholder participation processes in biodiversity conservation. It asks:
- How can a multidimensional power analysis allow us to better understand the context, design and social and biodiversity outcomes of stakeholder participation processes?
- What strategies in theory and practice exist to overcome the challenges related to power dynamics?
- What role can and should researchers, institutional representatives and practitioners play in the design and implementation of stakeholder participation processes that address power dynamics?
POWERBIODIV will adopt an “evidence informed” approach that includes scientific and grey literatures but also other expert knowledge and sources of validated evidence. To do so, POWERBIODIV will use well recognized methodologies for knowledge synthesis including high quality systematic reviews to integrate social and political theories of power in the conservation literature, with solution scanning and expert consultation to access the perspectives, stories, and knowledges not typically represented in conservation literature. POWERBIODIV will benefit both science and practice by providing a practical approach to addressing and integrating power dynamics in stakeholder processes with the aim of improving sustainable biodiversity conservation.
Juliette YOUNG – INRAE (France), James BUTLER – CSIRO (Australia)
Estelle BALIAN – Facilitation for Environmental Action and Learning (France), Simon CALLA – Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté (France), Audrey COREAU – OFB (France), Naïg COZANNET – AFD (France), James NEWIG – Leuphana University (Germany), Jethro PETTIT – Learning for change (Italy), Diana POUND – Dialogue matters (United Kingdom), Fabien QUETIER – Biotope (France), Iokine RODRIGUEZ – University of East Anglia (United Kingdom), Valeria SALVATORI – Institute of Applied Ecology (Italy), Eleanor STERLING – Museum of Natural History (USA), York VAN KORFF – Flow-ing (France), Claude GARCIA – ETH-Zurich (Switzerland).
POWERBIODIV brings together specialists in political science, sociology, conservation biology, geography, facilitation, conflict management, ecology and anthropology.