Science is a guiding light for people in many professions — including natural resource managers and policy makers. Most often, people turn to biophysical science to guide their work. But social science also has an important role to play.
Social science is the systematic study of people or groups of people, such as families, organizations or businesses. Social science can help natural resource practitioners:
• Understand how natural resources are connected to human values and needs.
• Identify potential outcomes and tradeoffs of management actions.
• Make more informed decisions.
Some practitioners are familiar with using social science, but others may be wondering where to begin. This guide provides quick tips for understanding social science and avoiding common pitfalls when integrating it into your work.