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New Task Force on Knowledge Cumulation in Earth System Governance Research

In an era where ever more research is produced – and where, at the same time, rigorous and reliable social science knowledge on how to govern the global sustainabiliy crisis is urgently needed –, ‘knowledge cumulation’ is emerging as an important and vibrant area of interest. How can we, as a community of scholars, avoid to work past each other, keeping re-inventing the wheel? How can research contribute meaningfully to a growing body of knowledge? How can we work together on common goals (rather than on a plethora of different research enterprises)?

With the aim to institutionalise the growing interest in knowledge cumulation within the ESG community, the “Task Force on Knowledge Cumulation” was initiated and inaugurated on 10 September 2021 and is currently convened by Jens Newig and Michael Rose from Leuphana University Lüneburg. At the inaugural meeting, participants discussed problem diagnoses and agreed that ESG research (and much of environmental governance research more broady) is not yet tapping the potential of knowledge cumulation. For example, it was recognised that our research field is driven by case studies, but there is little synthesis. The meeting closed by discussing pathways towards a stronger ethos – and practice – of knowledge cumulation. In the task force, we strive to develop and implement at least some of these pathways.

The task force currently comprises 22 members from Europe, Asia, Australia and North America.

New members are welcome and are kindly asked to register here.

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