SLR evaluates public perceptions of Geoscience in Ireland

SLR Consulting Ltd, a leader in global environmental and advisory services, was commissioned by the Geological Survey of Ireland (GSI) at the end of 2015, to undertake a review of the Irish public’s perception of geoscience activity (research, exploration and extraction of earth resources). The research was undertaken to better understand the requirements for social acceptance of geoscience activities by the relevant stakeholders.  

The report, carried out by SLR’s Geology and Planning teams in Dublin, was the result of an extensive review of national and international literature; consultations with members of the public, industry, national and local government, academia, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), landowners and community activists; and a plenary consultative workshop which was held on 3rd May 2016.

The aim of the study was to understand attitudes of stakeholders in Ireland to the exploitation of natural resources, the public perceptions of the risks involved, how best to accurately communicate risk and to develop integrated strategies to gain social licence for geoscience activities. Commenting on the report’s publication Deirdre Lewis, Technical Director – Geology, said “This report, the first of its kind for earth resources in Ireland, demonstrates that early and meaningful stakeholder engagement is critical for project delivery. Moreover, industry players recognise that communities’ concerns must be addressed to ensure a continued supply of indigenous resources.”

The report identifies research priorities to be addressed by the iCRAG Public Perception and Understanding platform (http://www.icrag-centre.org/ ) to help inform both public and industry policy.

The final report is available on GSI’s website, prepared by SLR. 

For further information or questions about the report please contact Deirdre Lewis, Technical Director – Geology, SLR Consulting Ireland.

Key Contacts:

Deirdre Lewis