5 days, 3 meetings, 1 topic: collaboration

It’s been a busy week for the GAP2 crew; in particular GAP2 partners Steve Mackinson, Martin Pastoors and Kari Stange, as they’ve taken the GAP2 message of participatory research on a tour of Europe.

ICES, Sweden

On Monday & Tuesday, alongside representatives from five Regional Advisory Councils (RACs), Steve, Kari & Martin attended “a first for ICES”; a stakeholder-scientist dialogue discussing how stakeholder-scientist working relationships can be strengthened. This was part of the annual meeting of the Working Group on Maritime Systems (WGMARS).

Wordle from ICES WG on Maritime SystemsGathered in Stockholm, all participants were warmly welcomed by the Chair Dorothy Dankel – who had put together a helpful presentation to  explain the full agenda of WGMARs 2013.

Discussions amongst scientists and stakeholders focused on strengthening the engagement between scientists and stakeholders across ICES regions. Priorities were identified as:

– Sharing views on how to make collaboration effective.
– Prioritising needs for research.

Kari Stange reflects on the meeting:

“One message I take from the meeting is that there are possibilities for improving both formal and informal ways of working together. We need to make moves where we can, rather than be overwhelmed by barriers created by “the system”.

Stakeholders in the RACs expressed the desire to move beyond one-way information sharing and be engaged in more in-depth collaborations where knowledge is both exchanged, and generated!

Collaborations require funding and we – both stakeholders and scientists – need to be creative and wise about finding and making efficient use of funding opportunities.”

The WGMARS report will be available soon and you can see a wordle of the meeting in the gallery below.

Science in Society, Belgium

Collaboration; surprisingly difficult.

Next up, Brussels. On Wednesday & Thursday, Steve Mackinson got stuck into a participatory workshop, where coordinators of Science in Society projects shared experiences and identified strategies to engage the public in Horizon 2020’s programme of research. GAP2’s participatory actions are seen as a good example of how to truly collaborate with different stakeholders in any given issue; collaboration which is central in delivering research which can help solve some of the challenges faced by European society.

You can view Steve Mackinson’s poster here.

DGMare, Belgium

And then came the end of the week. In Brussels again on Friday, Martin Pastoors & Steve Mackinson met with the Directorate General for Maritime Affairs & Fisheries (DGMare). Their mission? To explore “Facilitating and promoting regionalisation of the CFP”.  Their take-away understanding? The nitty gritty of the challenges of regionalisation and the need to establish informal processes for effective collaboration among stakeholders, member states and scientists.

Positively, DGMARE offer their support for a GAP2 led dialogue workshop at the end of February 2014.

More on the workshop and other developments soon!

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