Transdisciplinary research process with social actors
A transdisciplinary research process was set in motion in 2014 to stimulate social learning and networking through social actors’ participation in the design of the study and the dissemination of the research results. This process relies on several arenas (large workshops, steering group and follow-up committee), corresponding to different levels of commitment by the social actors, depending on their available time and motivations.
Large workshops involving Belgian social actors and EU “expert” actors that created or expanded robust and inspiring initiatives are organized on a yearly basis. The objectives of these workshops are:
· To create a platform to facilitate networking and social learning
· To present relevant and inspiring initiatives that can be useful for social actors
· To encourage large discussions on some relevant themes (through methodologies including world café)
· To build an interface to disseminate our main results (or theoretical concepts not commonly known but useful to actors)
Steering group of the transdisciplinary process
Several meetings were organized in 2014 and 2015 with a small set of social actors from Belgian civil society organizations and several researchers of UCL and ULB, with the assistance of an external facilitating team (Réseau ADES/Université du Nous/Collectiv-a). The main objective of these meetings was to prepare the workshops and to establish a sustainable partnership between the researchers and social actors, where social actors take part in the research work as co-developers.
The aim of the follow-up committee is that potential users of the research on the transition to sustainable food systems provide feedback on conceptual and methodological aspects, as well as active follow-up of and guidance on the research results. The follow-up committee