The Centre for Environmental Policy (CEP) focuses on the interface between science and policy in key environmental subjects through the interdisciplinary study of science, technology and innovation. The Centre aims to have a global impact on energy and environmental security policy, management of environmental quality, and sustainable transitions in environmental governance, through collaborative research and postgraduate training.
Focus on Evidence Based Policy Making
Efforts to address major environmental concerns face some formidable barriers. While there is increasing agreement on a number of key issues, a consensus has not yet been reached on how best to address concerns like flood risk and biodiversity loss, and sceptical voices often demand incontrovertible evidence of environmental change before they will allow measures to be taken. However, the often complex, ‘academic’ nature of scientific research doesn’t typically lend itself to rapid decision-making, while many commercial enterprises have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo.
The link between scientific evidence and policy making is critical. However, often despite good intentions, the objective of 'evidence based decision making' is rarely fully achieved, because research evidence may not be considered at the policy design stage, and also because the political imperative for quick results barely allows time to collect robust evidence.
Historically scientists have failed to communicate effectively the evidence from their research, and policy makers have failed to acknowledge its importance or use it appropriately in the decision making process. CEP research aims to enable real, effective, and sustainable solutions though effective translation and influence.