Trade-offs and synergies in joint knowledge creation for coastal management: Insights from ecology-oriented sand nourishment in the Netherlands

Franke van der Molen*, Jac. A. A. Swart, Henny J. van der Windt

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    In order to successfully inform environmental management, environmental research needs to balance legitimacy, credibility, and salience. This paper aims to identify trade-offs and synergies between these three attributes in collaborative research for environmental management, and draws lessons for organizing such research. Empirically, it draws on a study of a research program on the ecological effects of coastal protection through sand nourishment. Our findings suggest that the legitimacy and salience of knowledge creation, particularly in an interactive governance context, are complementary. At the same time, we found trade-offs between practical relevance and fundamental knowledge creation, as well as between issue diversity and the depth and quality of scientific inquiry. Balancing the legitimacy, credibility, and salience of knowledge may be enabled by interactive knowledge creation involving policy-makers, experts and stakeholders. We conclude that successful management-oriented environmental research, particularly in the case of wicked problems, requires both a careful design of arrangements for stakeholder engagement, and well- established linkages to broader regulatory and institutional contexts.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)564-577
    Number of pages14
    JournalJournal of Environmental Policy Planning
    Volume20
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Keywords

    • Coastal management
    • participatory research
    • legitimacy
    • credibility
    • salience
    • SCIENCE-POLICY INTERFACES
    • BOUNDARY OBJECTS
    • CLIMATE-CHANGE
    • WADDEN SEA
    • CREDIBILITY
    • LEGITIMACY
    • CHALLENGES
    • SUSTAINABILITY
    • OPPORTUNITIES
    • COPRODUCTION

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