Bridging the Gap Between Policy and Science 

Bridging the Gap Between Policy and Science 

The Europlanet Policy Team reports on a workshop that took place as part of the Europlanet Research Infrastructure Meeting (ERIM) 2023 last June. 

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What is the role of science in policy making? What are the needs of decision makers in order to develop policies based on scientific evidence? What kind of skills are needed for scientists to better engage with policy makers? 

The workshop ‘Raising Space Research Visibility for Policy Makers’, which took place on Wednesday 21 June in Bratislava aimed to address these questions. The programme was designed to look at the interactions in different academic and working levels between scientists and policy makers, and identify challenges and practical skills needed for engaging with policy and decision making. 

Eleni Chatzichristou (Europlanet Policy Working Group Chair) set the scene with an overview of the objectives of the session and said a few words about the important role of planetary scientists in informing policy makers about space exploration. 

In a recorded talk, Rodrigo da Costa, Director of the European Union Agency for the Space Programme (EUSPA), outlined EUSPA’s activities and how it contributes to knowledge-based policy and decision making for the EU Space Programme. Mr da Costa also highlighted the importance of the role of space technology in the context of growing sectors of the European economy, but also the objectives of national and EU policies. 

Finally, Noel Baker (BIRA-IASB, Belgium), a climate scientist and science policy advocate, gave a practical talk on how to raise the visibility of space and planetary research to policy makers. Dr Baker highlighted the need to amplify the voices of researchers in decision-making, and analysed how research outputs are perceived and utilised by policy makers. She gave practical tips on opportunities to enhance visibility and valorise space research in a policy context. The session finished with a lively discussion on the issues raised by the speakers.

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Issue 6 of Europlanet Magazine