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Science-Policy-Society Interactions

How do we build capacity effectively? What is the best way to train government officials in the use of dES tools? How should we communicate findings from complex models? How can we use stakeholder knowledge?

Photo: Fatos Bytyqi on Unsplash

The need for evidence-based policy-making is of the utmost importance. An optimal science-policy interface is needed in order to understand/negotiate with the varying values of stakeholders and foster effective communication and co-production of knowledge between science and policy actors. Complex phenomena related to sustainability and sustainable development cannot be tackled in silos. Here, we explore several methods and tools which trigger an effective science-policy interface.

Key research questions

  • How do we develop effective science-policy interface frameworks in different sectors/settings such as industries, transport, and residential buildings?
  • What are the roles and responsibilities of different actors in addressing societal challenges (Co-producing the science–policy interface: towards common but differentiated responsibilities)?
  • How do we transfer knowledge (also, co-production of information) among varying actors, e.g. local governments?
  • How do we build capacity effectively?
  • What is the best way to train government officials in the use of dES tools?
  • How should we communicate findings from complex models?
  • How can we use stakeholder knowledge?
  • How to correctly communicate scientific findings with key stakeholders?
  • How to develop methods that incorporate the views and experience of decision-makers (knowledge users)?
  • How to best help policy makers in using modelling tools to analyze future pathways towards sustainable development?
  • How do we reduce fragmentation of the European research space? [ECEMF]

Main research objectives

  • Understanding how open science contributes to evidence-based policy making (CCG)
  • Identifying and co-developing the most pressing policy-relevant research questions with a range of stakeholders.
  • Producing a comprehensive, relevant and coherent evidence base for energy and climate policy impact assessment.
  • Providing robust policy insights.

Methods used

  • Stakeholders’ elicitation
  • Interviews with stakeholders
  • Robust Decision Making
  • Research policy workshops [ECEMF]
  • Visualization of results, discussion forums [ECEMF]
  • Impact assessment (surveys)
  • Iterative and participatory method


Climate, Land and Energy Analytical study of Potential Nexus Issues in Jordan and Morocco

With the goal of contributing to carrying out the “Implementing the 2030 Agenda for water efficiency/productivity and water sustainability in NENA countries” project, funded by the UN Food and Agricultural Organization, KTH is providing analyses and support on decision making across the climate, land energy and water spheres in Morocco and Jordan

European Climate and Energy Modelling Forum

The aim of the European Climate and Energy Modelling Forum (ECEMF) is to provide knowledge to inform the development of future energy and climate policies at national and European levels.

OPM Ethiopia project “Energy system development pathways in Ethiopia”

The project “Energy system development pathways for Ethiopia” is being led by the University College of London (UCL) along with the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), the Ethiopian Development Research Institute (EDRI) and Addis Ababa Institute of Technology (AAIT). The project is part of the Applied Research Programme on Energy for Economic Growth (EEG), led by Oxford Policy Management.


The project aims at developing innovative methodologies to facilitate the design of policies and bridge knowledge and technology gaps in the field of the water-land-food-energy-climate Nexus under climate change conditions. SIM4NEXUS will develop a methodology of integration using a complexity science approach and a Serious Game, as an integrating tool for testing and evaluating policy decisions. The Serious Game will be operable at different scales ranging from regional to national, to continental, to global, as well as at different time horizons—short, medium and long-term.

Supporting the Design of Sustainable Development Policies with Policy Modelling Tools