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Open Access Beyond projects: benefits of research accompanying research: Reflections from the research programme Sustainable Land Management

This article is Open Access under the terms of the Creative Commons CC BY licence.

In manifold ways science and practice are working together to find solutions for sustainable land management. New research programmes on this topic generate a large variety of single project results. Accompanying research projects will realize additional value by merging and synthesising the results from these projects and by supporting the generation of new knowledge for science and society.

For many actors in science and policy, the additional value of research accompanying research projects remains open. Referring to a recent publication in GAIA that introduces a typology for accompanying research (AR), this article discusses the central issues, content, processes and ongoing challenges in an AR project accompanying the German research programme Sustainable Land Management. The important value of AR can be seen in communication, networking, the reflexive generation of new knowledge and knowledge management based on trust building and competence. AR also exhibits great potential for research on cross-cutting issues in research programmes and has special significance for meta-studies on different research projects taking place under similar funding conditions. However, additional analyses are necessary for a better understanding of the outcomes and impacts of AR and to create wider appreciation and acceptance.

Keywords: accompanying research; knowledge integration; land management; transdisciplinarity

Document Type: Research Article

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Publication date: October 18, 2019

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  • GAIA is a peer-reviewed inter- and transdisciplinary journal for scientists and other interested parties concerned with the causes and analyses of environmental and sustainability problems and their solutions.

    Environmental problems cannot be solved by one academic discipline. The complex natures of these problems require cooperation across disciplinary boundaries. Since 1991, GAIA has offered a well-balanced and practice-oriented forum for transdisciplinary research. GAIA offers first-hand information on state of the art environmental research and on current solutions to environmental problems. Well-known editors, advisors, and authors work to ensure the high quality of the contributions found in GAIA and a unique transdisciplinary dialogue – in a comprehensible style.

    GAIA is an ISI-journal, listed in the Science Citation Index Expanded, Social Science Citation Index and in Current Contents/Social and Behavioral Sciences.

    All contributions undergo a double-blind peer review.

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