Barriers to climate change adaptation might not lie so much in ‘gaps’ in scientific or technical understandings but rather in the complexities of social, institutional and cultural transitions in climate change governance. Effective responses to complex environmental issues seem to require ‘co-learning for systemic governance transformations’. However, this process remains poorly understood. This article analyses the performance and orchestration of governance learning for systemic transformation in practice, drawing on examples from the international climate change adaptation and water governance (CADWAGO) project. We show that in these examples the interplay of ‘separating’ and ‘connecting’ is central to transforming governance in the European water management landscape. The article concludes that an orientation to boundary work and co-production of knowledge contributes to scientific narratives that can inspire meaningful connective action and move complex socioecological systems into a more sustainable trajectory.
- Climate change adaptation
- Social learning