Research objectives and content
and in variable ways in different countries, influence environmental science and technology policy processes. In particular we shall examine their social composition and their links with formal policy bodies; and we will include in this empirically based analysis an assessment of how such networks are enhancing the effectiveness of existing policy bodies, and effecting democratic legitimacy, given their potential for increasing the participatory breadth of policy inputs. The research falls under Area 1: Evaluation of Science and Technology Policy Options in Europe. It is focused on Technological development, sustainable growth, employment, environment and the organisation of society (1.2) and looks at "interfaces, communication and networks in innovation and RTD processes" (1.1) in this context. While each European country faces a common challenge to respond to the need for sustainable development, meeting that challenge in practice is strongly conditioned by national institutional traditions and policy styles. The project seeks to identify the sources of divergence and convergence in environmental science and technology policy among a wide range of European countries: five EU member countries (Denmark, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands and Sweden) as well as Lithuania and Norway. The project is divided into four work packages:
1) national experience papers, presenting the processes of policy reconstitution and network-building in the different countries,
2) public-policy interface, examining the interactions between policy-makers and public representatives, including environmental organisations
3) networks and brokers, in which the key actors are subjected to more detailed analysis
4) transnational linkages, investigating the connections that are being established across national boundaries, and their role in European and national policy-making. A central ambition in the project is to carry out systematic comparative analysis and derive conclusions which can be useful to policy deliberations at both national and European levels.