BES – NERC Policy Training Workshop

After two days of exciting policy engagement training in London, the Policy Training Workshop organised by British Ecological Society (BES) and Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) has come to a close.

The event was attended by thirty NERC funded PhD students and early career scientists working in policy relevant research areas who wanted to further their skills in order to influence environmental policy through the effective communication of scientific information.

The workshop met these needs by providing participants with useful knowledge about how the policy-making process works, how scientists can engage with policy-makers and helped improve personal communication skills in order to influence decision-makers.

Training was packed with discussions, questions, networking opportunities and presentations on how to link science with policy, and the challenges and opportunities scientists face in doing so. Participants were also assigned a number of skill building tasks, culminating with the group exercise of creating a hypothetical policy briefing and then presenting the idea to a decision-maker. This exercise proved to be very helpful, giving participants a real insight into the do’s and don’ts of science communication, and preparing them for future interactions with politicians.