Last October 17 2018, Barbara Willaarts (IIASA), Violeta Cabello (UAB), Gloria Salmoral (Cranfield) and I (photo below) organized a double session at the Water Science for Impact Conference in Wageningen. titled “Stop the Buzzword: closing persistent gaps in the implementation of the Water-Energy-Food Nexus”.

DreamTeam

The first part of the session introduced the projects we currently work on:  ISWEL, MAGICNEXT-AG and IANEX.  All four share the use of both a nexus approach in quantitative analysis to assess the validity of sustainability-related policies and participatory research to design, support, validate and assess those quantitative models.

The second part of the session consisted of a workshop in which we discussed in an Open Space with the attendants about the main challenges of including participatory processes in quantitative nexus research and how participation can contribute to stop the use of the nexus as a buzzword.  The discussions centred on three broad topics: the importance of public participation for the nexus approach, the lack of integration of nexus-related research into policy agendas and the challenges of integrating the results coming from participatory processes into quantitative modelling.

The IANEX presentation focused on participatory indicator design. You can have a look at it in the media library.