Core Support for the Board on Environmental Change and Society (BECS) of the National Academies: National Academy of Sciences

Toby Warden

[email protected]

This award will continue support for core operations of the Board on Environmental Change and Society (BECS) of the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences. This board has functioned under its current and previous names since 1989 to advance science and environmental decision making by promoting integrated analysis of the human interactions with the natural environment. BECS will work with government agencies and other sponsors build understanding of human interactions with the biophysical environment; contribute to the development of a coherent field of scientific endeavor in this area; integrate social and behavioral science research into environmental science and policy; advance the behavioral, social, and decision sciences; and provide benefits to society through the application of these sciences to manage human-environment interactions. BECS will evaluate research simultaneously from the perspectives of the natural and social sciences with a focus on advancing generalizable knowledge to assist decision makers and improve the quality of practices at the federal, state, and local levels. BECS also will facilitate the development of an interdisciplinary research community in response to an increased realization that global environmental issues require enhanced knowledge based on social science research. Because it is responsive to and anticipatory in the advancement of cutting-edge science and application to policy to identifying innovative solutions to improve societal wellbeing, BECS serves as a national resource for the advancement of use-inspired science to inform decision makers, stakeholders, and communities addressing a myriad of environmental change challenges and opportunities.<br/><br/>The Board on Environmental Change and Society functions as the National Academies' primary unit for advancing research on the interactions between human activities and the environment by providing a forum for linking the social and natural sciences in research, planning, and decision making. BECS will strive to integrate social, behavioral, and natural science knowledge to address emerging scientific and governmental concerns through workshops, consensus studies, semi-annual meetings, symposia, and a variety of outreach mechanisms. Over the period to be supported with this award, BECS will develop and oversee activities, engage a greater breadth of stakeholders and serve as a focal point toward which federal agencies and other governmental and non-governmental decision makers look to for integrated, trans-disciplinary approaches to cross cutting environmental challenges and opportunities. BECS aims to advance new lines of interdisciplinary research on topics at the intersection of human and natural systems such as innovation in energy transitions and the social implications of such transitions; the nexus between food, energy, and water; building resilient and low-carbon cities; and shifts in migration under conditions of environmental change.

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