ICES is welcoming more social scientists and researchers with background in humanities to its network and, for example, within integrated ecosystem assessment (IEA) work. But are we talking about the same things and do we mean the same thing when we talk?
Consideration of human aspects is increasingly demanded in marine research contexts, for resource management generally and, specifically in ICES, for ecosystem overviews. This has led, among other things, to an increase of interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary work within ICES and new expert groups with a high(er) participation of social scientists and experts from the humanities (e.g. WGSOCIAL, WGBESEO) adding to the earlier efforts of groups such as the Strategic Initiative on the Human Dimension.
While groups that include researchers from social science and humanities disciplines are making some progress in areas such as IEA, assessment of ecosystem services, and marine spatial planning, their expertise is currently dispersed and the difficulties of incorporating these disciplines into ICES groups has been identified for both established and early career researchers.
These disciplines introduce new topics, perceptions, terminologies, and epistemologies to ICES. Until now, ICES research has often primarily focused on natural science with much smaller social science or humanities participation (especially those focusing on social and cultural issues). More of these methods and data are being included – especially within models - but full integration of researchers from the social sciences and the humanities is still far from well established.
In this network session, first, we will look at the work done so far from the disciplinary perspective of social sciences and the humanities (see for example literature focusing on human dimensions, ecosystem services, or behavioural science). We will then discuss the differences and similarities among natural science, social science, and humanities approaches and the opportunities and challenges that they bring about. This will involve looking at content, methodology, and use of natural and social sciences/humanities in the context of ICES current science plan and into the future.