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Photo of Dr Karen Scott

Dr Karen Scott

Senior Lecturer

01326 259484

Peter Lanyon Building 1.19

I am an interdisciplinary social scientist based in the discipline of politics and part of the Environment and Sustainability Institute. My research interests focus on the politics of knowledge and epistemic injustice, particularly where it relates to evidence for public policy and sustainability. I study the international interest in measuring wellbeing for public policy and particularly in the UK and New Zealand. I have worked in, and alongside, local and central government to improve evidence for public policy on wellbeing and sustainability issues.  I am co-editor for the Palgrave MacMillan book series The Politics and Policy of Wellbeing and my publications include: Measuring Wellbeing: Towards Sustainability (Routledge 2012) and The Politics of Wellbeing: Theory, Policy and Practice (with Prof Ian Bache, Palgrave 2018). Related to this research, I teach undergraduate courses in the theories and governance of ‘The Good Life’ from classical to contemporary times.

I also do applied research on how to improve policy evaluation in environmental policy areas, working with the Centre for Evaluating Complexity Across the Nexus, with government partners DEFRA. BEIS, EA and FSA. 

I have conducted research for DEFRA on pollination stakeholder knowledge and motivations.

Research interests

  • The Politics of Knowledge, Evidence and Policy/ Policy Evaluation
  • The Politics of Wellbeing /The Good Life
  • The links between Sustainable Development and Wellbeing
  • Wellbeing in Rural Areas
  • The Politics of Pollination /social science of pollination 

Current projects

  • ESRC Centre for Evaluating Complexity Across the Nexus (CECAN). Working with government departments and agencies with responsibility for NEXUS related policy (Defra, DECC, FSA and EA) to improve policy evaluation. (2015-2019) 
  • Defra Policy Evaluation Fellowship. Working with Defra Strategic Evidence and Analysis Team in Noble House, London to help policy professionals to improve their use of evaluation in policy processes. (2015-2016). 
  • The Impact on Young People of Public Sector Changes in Rural Areas. (2016-2017). With Mark Shucksmith (PI) and Niki Black at The Institute for Social Renewal, Newcastle University. 
  • ESRC seminar series The Politics of Wellbeing, with Professor Ian Bache, Sheffield University and New Economics Foundation. (2013-2015). Currently producing outputs from this series


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