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Revista Colombiana de Sociología

Print version ISSN 0120-159X


BORQUEZ GONZALEZ, Roxana. The interface between science and public policies in chile: a look at research on climate change. Rev. colomb. soc. [online]. 2017, vol.40, n.2, pp.311-332. ISSN 0120-159X.

Important changes in the relation between science and society have taken place in the last few decades. There has been a shift from a paradigm in which science transforms society to one that opens up the possibility of society transforming science. The contribution of the science sector, as well as that of each one of the social actors, is fundamental in supporting decision-making regarding public policies, as stated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which has played a key role in the adoption of actions by the international community. In Chile, however, the relation between science and politics has not been smooth enough. On the basis of an exploratory qualitative methodology, the objective of our study was to identify and analyze the gaps and facilitators of the relation between researchers in the field of natural science and public policies in Chile, focusing on the area of climate change. This made it possible to analyze the structure and dynamics of incentives for activities in the scientific and public spheres, as well as the existing mechanisms for communication and coordination between them. Thus, eight gaps and two facilitators were identified. The following aspects are worth highlighting: the scarce interest of the science sector in providing advisories requested by the public services that generate public policies; the lack of incentives or academic demands to simplify contents: and the absence of regular communication and interaction, which creates a difference between what the political-administrative sphere expects of scientists and the way the latter think their participation can be useful and effective. Moreover, flaws in the coordination between those who finance research and those who design public policies were observed. The results also show that the gaps between spheres are not limited to the issue of climate change; rather, they are due to the way scientific and political structures are shaped in Chile.

Keywords : climate change; Chile; financing of science; generation of policies; interface science-politics; public policies; role of science.

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