Biermann, Frank. 2001. "Big Science, Small Impacts--In the South? The Influence of Global Environmental Assessments on Expert Communities in India." Global Environmental Change 11(4): 297-309.
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To help decision-makers cope with the uncertainty of global environmental change, transnational networks of experts have offered numerous assessments of the state of knowledge, often advertised as consensus of “international science.” Substantial social science research has already analyzed the effects of such global environmental assessments on industrialized countries; this study explores their influence in India as a pivotal developing country. It appears that although global environmental assessments did not remain without any influence in India, their effect is still small. These limitations could be addressed, it is argued, by increasing the usefulness and legitimacy of global environmental assessments in the South through stronger consideration of the socio-economic context of developing countries and other Southern concerns and interests, by raising the participation of Southern experts, by enhancing research capacities in and communication links to the South, and by ensuring that global environmental assessments are organized as self-adaptive processes, such as IPCC, and not as one-shot effort, such as the Global Biodiversity Assessment.
Keywords: global environmental assessments, India, global change research, climate change, biodiversity, stakeholder participation
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