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Knowledge that is actionable by whom? Underlying models of organized action for conservation

Abstract : Conservation scientists produce knowledge that is destined to inform conservation action. There is however a widespread perception that a “knowing-to-doing” gap hinders the uptake of knowledge for conservation action. Vague reasoning on who is to take action is pointed here as a significant component of that problem. As conservation scientists discuss options on how to bridge that gap, they have to reflect on issues of agency and organization: who do they see as taking action? What does significant action essentially consist in? And what is the fundamental structure of the relations and power dynamics between the actors involved? Based on such questions, we propose here a typology of six underlying conceptual models of organized action that are used (implicitly or explicitly) to reflect and debate on action for conservation. We analyse the system of crossed critiques that result from the differences in their premises on agency and organization. This clarification allows a better understanding of recurrent controversies in the conservation field, and can help conservation scientists be more explicit about their strategic choices as they increasingly focus on the kind of action they want their research to inform.
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Laurent Mermet. Knowledge that is actionable by whom? Underlying models of organized action for conservation. Environmental Science & Policy, 2018, ⟨10.1016/j.envsci.2018.04.004⟩. ⟨hal-02910293⟩

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