5.5 RECOMMENDATION

The Phase 2 study should include processes for involving and communicating with stakeholders. A plan for stakeholder engagement should be developed prior to the initiation of data gathering and analysis for this study.

Stakeholder engagement is an essential element of any risk assessment process that addresses important public interests. Several approaches were used in this Phase 1 study to engage with stakeholders. The Phase 2 study can build on these Phase 1 efforts to achieve effective collaboration with local people and officials and increase social trust and confidence. To this end, the Phase 2 study should develop and execute an engagement plan that includes processes to:

  • Identify key stakeholders and stakeholder groups with whom engagement is essential.
  • Assess stakeholder concerns, perceptions, and knowledge.
  • Communicate the questions that the Phase 2 study can address and its strengths and limitations; communicate the results from the Phase 2 study in forms that are useful to different stakeholder groups.
  • Make the information used in the Phase 2 study publicly accessible to the extent possible.

It is important that the engagement plan be developed prior to the initiation of data gathering and analysis to ensure early engagement with stakeholders in the Phase 2 study. It will also be important to monitor how stakeholder views and concerns change during the study in response to external events. Adapting the plan to changing events can improve the success of engagement efforts.

REFERENCES

Aakko, E. (2004). Risk communication, risk perception, and public health. Wis. Med. J. 103(1):25-27.

Aakhus, M. (2011). Crafting interactivity for stakeholder engagement: Transforming assumptions about communication in science and policy. Health Phys. 101:531-535.

Chess, C, and K. Salomone. (1992). Rhetoric and reality: Risk communication in government agencies. J. Environ. Educ. 23(3):28-33.

Covello, V., D. von Winterfeldt, and P. Slovic (1987). Communicating risk information to the public. In Risk Communication, edited by J.C. Davies, V. Covello, and F. Allen. Washington, DC: The Conservation Foundation.

Earle T.C., and G. T. Cvetkovich (1995). Social trust: Toward a cosmopolitan society Westport, CT: Praeger.

Fischhoff, B., P. Slovic, S. Lichtenstein, S. Read, and B. Combs (1978). How safe is safe enough? A psychometric study of attitudes towards technological risks and benefits. Policy Sci. 9(2):127-152.



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