The sustainable development goals of the 2030 Agenda call for evidence-based decision making and practice at global, regional, national and local levels. Universities are increasingly redirecting their research strategies towards finding solutions for global challenges. However, too often relevant research knowledge still stays in academic discussions and does not find its way to benefit the societies at large. Concluding research with policy recommendations, writing policy briefs and doing commissioned studies based on research is a good start, but also actual encounters are needed to efficiently advance the use of research for common good. An important part of the production of knowledge that is based on research, but relevant to policy or practice, can happen in the reciprocal dialogue between the actors, which at the same time offers opportunities for meaningful mutual learning.
The aim of this panel: From research-based knowledge to sustainable societies – How to best advance researchers’ cooperation with decision makers, private sector and civil society? is to discuss how the research uptake by non-academic actors and the cooperation between researchers and the public sector, private companies and civil society could be best encouraged and advanced, specifically to reach sustainable development. How to find common understanding and match the expectations for relevant knowledge between different actors of society? How to guarantee academic freedom and objectivity when the collaboration includes political or business interests? How to foster the use of diverse and inclusive research knowledge in the cooperation? The discussion is expected to offer inspiration and also practical advice for creating more neutral spaces for bridging research to policy and practice with reciprocity and respect to each other’s knowledge and viewpoints. This panel brings together representatives of Finnish and Latin American research community, as well as public and private sector actors to discuss the use of research-based knowledge in Latin America and Finland, aligned with the thematic focus of CILAC 2021 on inclusive science.