Confluences : Navigating where science, society and policy come together in Canada

A Signature Knowledge Mobilization Initiative by the Institute for Science, Society and Policy

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Mobilizing SSP Research for Policy Impact: A Strategic KMb Process and Publication

The challenges facing society – from climate change to global pandemics, inequality and beyond – require solutions at the intersection of science, society and policy. Cutting-edge research is being done in this space at the Institute for Science, Society and Policy (ISSP), but there is untapped opportunity to co-produce and mobilize this knowledge with decision-makers. This project takes a strategic, innovative approach combining direct engagement with decision-makers and the co-creation of an annual knowledge mobilization (KMb) series and edited volume on SSP.

The project advances the Institute’s five-year strategic vision: helping Canada transform decision-making to meet grand challenges by strengthening relationships among academic, public, private and civil society leaders. Confluences proudly received a 2023-2024 Knowledge Mobilization Grant from the Office of the Vice-President Research and Innovation

Project Objectives

  • Convene established and emerging scholars and practitioners at the SSP interfaces to mobilize research and practical knowledge, build new relationships, understanding and insight now and into the future;

  • Support strategic and “pracademic” knowledge mobilization and impact throughout the year, convening academics in the SSP space and practitioners in the policy arena, industry and civil society to impact policies, programs, and practices;

  • Raise ISSP’s profile with key audiences as a locus of insights and expertise in the SSP space;

  • Publish a book that is accessible, understandable and actionable for practitioners, but with peer reviewed contributions to offer a scholarly outlet for researchers; and

  • Provide high value training and networking opportunities for students and early career researchers.

The book resulting from this KMb initiative will feature:

  • an analysis of the year’s key developments in the SSP research and policy space, including a statistical update and analysis of the annual federal budget through an SSP lens;

  • chapters by invited authors focused on a theme of policy importance identified collaboratively and presenting cutting-edge SSP research of relevance to decision- makers;

  • a digital and open access format.

The overarching aim is for uOttawa to be a ‘go to’ destination for policy practitioners to co-create, learn about and apply leading-edge SSP insights.

Project Convening and KMb Activities

  • Tailored, in-person briefings to federal departments, industry and civil society organizations to complement plain-language policy briefs;

  • Workshops involving pracademics and contributing authors to dive deeper into the issues and supporting data;

  • Short, topic-specific podcasts and/or video recordings and video extracts from events;

  • A book launch event as well as other ISSP panel discussion/speaker events; and

  • Blogs and social media posts.

Anticipated Results

  • enhanced interdisciplinary, cross-sectoral, co-created SSP learnings and KMb

  • greater knowledge dissemination, uptake and impact of SSP research on policies, programs, practices

  • accessible resources for practitioners, decision-makers and researchers at the SSP interface

  • increased dialogue and collaboration across the ISSP network, uOttawa and beyond