Efforts to reduce environmental vulnerabilities --particularly those related to climate change -- often elicit interest from multiple stakeholders, some with conflicting positions on the causes, consequences, and appropriate actions. Collaborative learning is an approach and that helps stakeholders in conflict move from a focus on their differences and towards mutual trust, respect, and increased understanding of each other. In doing so, collaborative learning enables these groups to identify commonalities, accept differences, and develop strategies that meet a range of needs and goals.



Our Approach: 

Collaborative learning has been used by the Deal Island Peninsula Partnership to help bring together a diverse group of stakeholders from the local communities, county, state, and federal, government, academic institutions, and non-governmental organizations to discuss and address complex social and environmental challenges on the Deal Island peninsula. We seek to use a collaborative learning to integrate local experiential knowledge with scientific knowledge and expand our pool of resources, skills, and ideas from which to draw from for resilience planning. We believe that coupling local knowledge with scientific knowledge will provide the best possible outcomes. The implementation and integration of a range of expertise, skills, and perspectives results in projects that are valid, meaningful, and more sustainable due to increased accuracy and stakeholder ownership of the process.


Our collaborative learning approach involves:

Learn More About Collaborative Learning: 

Collaborative learning activities can be tailored to meet a range of topics and needs. Our approach has been guided by Dr. Chistine Feurt, a consultant on our project who has facilitated many collaborative learning discussions. For more information on collaborative learning, please see Dr. Feurt's manual, The Collaborative Learning Guide for Ecosystem Management.

Why collaborative learning?