Adaptive Governance: How Collaboration Matters When Integrating Science, Policy and Decision Making

Event Type: 
Toddi Steelman
Speaker Title: 
Associate Professor of Environmental and Natural Resource Policy, North Carolina State University
Monday, March 29, 2010 - 3:30pm - 4:30pm
105 McClelland Park at the corner of Park and Fourth Street
Institute of the Environment

How do we move toward more sustainable paradigms of natural resources governance? What role will collaboration play in these new paradigms? This presentation presents two paradigms of practice: scientific management and adaptive governance. Scientific management aspired to rise above politics, relying on science as the foundation for efficient policies made through a single-central authority--a bureaucratic structure with the appropriate mandate, jurisdiction, and expert personnel. Adaptive governance integrates scientific and other types of knowledge into policies that advance the common interest in particular contexts through open decision-making structures. Using comparative case studies of endangered fish populations in the Klamath Basin and Colorado River, the presentation illustrates how collaboration facilitates the integration of science, policy and decision making for natural resource governance that serves the common interest.


Mitch McClaran (; Laura López-Hoffman (; Diane Austin (; Kirk Emerson (; or Ed deSteiguer (