Tag: Science4policy podcast

Stella Ladi on science advice in Greece

Greece does not have a long tradition of institutionalised science advisory mechanisms, but after dealing relatively well with Covid, the situation is starting to change. Professor Stella Ladi, an expert on evidence-informed policymaking at home and internationally, talks to Toby Wardman about the past, present and future of science advice in Greece.

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Ottmar Edenhofer on giving climate advice in Europe

The EU climate law created a new institution, the European Scientific Advisory Board on Climate Change, which started work just this year and targets the European Commission, Parliament and Council. Its chair, Professor Ottmar Edenhofer, took time out of his busy schedule to share with us what it’s like setting up a new science advice body and how happy he is with their first significant report.

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Hugh Pope on experts in sortition-based democracies

Elections are not the only way to power democratic decision-making. A system of government by random selection of citizens, or ‘sortition’, has been around since at least ancient Athens and, as Hugh Pope explains, has never quite disappeared. But if we adopt such a radically different way of making policy, what are the implications of science for policy? Do experts take on different roles, and how can citizen-politicians acquire the skills they need to make judgement calls on scientifically complex issues?

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Eleni Zika on curiosity-driven research and its contribution to policy

Most of Europe’s colossal Horizon research funding programme is laser-focused on strategic objectives set by policymakers. But one Horizon-funded institution, the European Research Council, breaks the mould: its grants are awarded on the basis of excellence alone, and as Dr Eleni Zika explains, they are proud to deliberately ignore questions such as the usefulness of science to policy or society.

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Barbara Vis on heuristics

Politicians are humans, and humans do not always reason syllogistically from premises to conclusions. The problem is amplified when political decisions have to be made fast, under conditions of uncertainty, with either not enough information or far too much. That’s where heuristics come in — and Professor Barbara Vis has built her career on studying how and when they are used, and what we can do about it.

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Heather Rogers & Jelka Zaletel on implementation science

When Slovenia rolled out its national diabetes plan, they had the evidence, they had the funding, they had the centres, they had the doctors and nurses… but people didn’t show up. Simply having the right information is not enough to build an effective policy. You can’t just factor out the complexities — you need to factor them in.

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Salvatore Aricò on science advice at the United Nations

How might the future of science advice look at the global level? Will the establishment of a UN Group of Friends on Science for Action be the catalyst that elevates science advice to the highest levels of multilateral decision-making, and how will this complement the Secretary-General’s renewed scientific advisory board? And what should the role of the international science community be?

In this episode, Dr Salvatore Aricò, chief executive of the International Science Council, shares his experience and his vision with Toby Wardman, drawing on practical examples to illustrate how such science advice mechanisms work in practice.

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