The uptake of scientific knowledge is not always a grand affair. Many observers assume that scientists need to communicate with high-ranking government officials to influence policy. Grandiosely seen, scientists’ views and understandings are utilised by government officials to change a national, provincial, or local government policy. Scientists can also communicate scientific knowledge with government officials in a ‘low-key’ manner where public administrators are not at the top of the governmental hierarchy. This paper reports on a dialogue between scientists from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and officials from the South African Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) regarding a sediment research project in the Olifants River, South Africa. One of our results is that how scientists view the policy environment could have a bearing on the nature of their initiatives to develop uptake strategies. A view that exclusively highlights governments as policy actors could inevitably exclude non-state actors and vice versa. Keywords: Sediment transport; Olifants River Basin; policy; uptake strategy; mutual learning.

doi.org/10.7564/15-IJWG104
International Journal of Water Governance

Meissner, R, Jovanovic, N, & Petersen, C.R. (2017). What one knows is unknown to others: A Sediment Transport Study and its Policy Application. International Journal of Water Governance, 2017(5:1), 1–18. doi:10.7564/15-IJWG104