Systematic reviews of qualitative evidence for environmental policy and management: An overview of different methodological options
Macura, Biljana ; Suškevičs, Monika ; Garside, Ruth ; Hannes, Karin ; Rees, Rebecca ; Rodela, Romina - \ 2019
Environmental Evidence 8 (2019)1. - ISSN 2047-2382
Critical interpretative synthesis - Framework synthesis - Meta-ethnography - Mixed methods reviews - Qualitative evidence synthesis - Realist synthesis - Thematic synthesis
Qualitative research related to the human dimensions of conservation and environment is growing in quantity. Rigorous syntheses of such studies can help develop understanding and inform decision-making. They can combine findings from studies in varied or similar contexts to address questions relating to, for example, the lived experience of those affected by environmental phenomena or interventions, or to intervention implementation. Researchers in environmental management have adapted methodology for systematic reviews of quantitative research so as to address questions about the magnitude of intervention effects or the impacts of human activities or exposure. However, guidance for the synthesis of qualitative evidence in this field does not yet exist. The objective of this paper is to present a brief overview of different methods for the synthesis of qualitative research and to explore why and how reviewers might select between these. The paper discusses synthesis methods developed in other fields but applicable to environmental management and policy. These methods include thematic synthesis, framework synthesis, realist synthesis, critical interpretive synthesis and meta-ethnography. We briefly describe each of these approaches, give recommendations for the selection between them, and provide a selection of sources for further reading.
Towards an evidence base on the value of social learning-oriented approaches in the context of climate change and food security
Epp, Marissa Van; Garside, Ben - \ 2019
Environmental Policy and Governance 29 (2019)2. - ISSN 1756-932X - p. 118 - 131.
climate change adaptation - food security - monitoring and evaluation - social learning
Attention to social learning's potential to improve development outcomes in the context of climate change and food security challenges is growing. Yet evidence supporting the wide range of assertions about the outcomes of social learning processes is insufficient. More work is needed to understand when and how a social learning-oriented approach is effective. We respond to the gap in evidence by piloting the Climate Change and Social Learning initiative's monitoring and evaluation framework for social learning. Our objectives are to begin building an evidence base and to test the theory of change behind the framework. Using a peer-assist approach, we apply the framework to eight case studies in partnership with five initiatives. We analyse trends in evidence gathered across the case studies in four dimensions of social learning (engagement, iterative learning, capacity development, and challenging institutions) along three dimensions of change (process, learning outcomes, and changes in values and practice).