Poster Presentation: Advancing “Strategic Communication” in Environmental Decision-Making

A significant amount of science falls into the category of “data rich, but information poor,” with science produced without sufficient consideration of its use, or decision context, and without processes in place to translate information for specific environmental decision-making, or adaptive governance and management decisions. The field of Strategic Communication involves a focused effort to identify, develop, and present multiple types of communication media on a given subject. A Strategic Communication program recognizes the limitations of the most common communication models (primarily “one size fits all” and “presenting everything and letting the audience decide what is important”) and specifically focuses on building a communication framework that is composed of three interlinked pillars:

  • Message – Identifying the right content for a given audience and a vehicle
  • Audience – Identify the right target group for a given message and vehicle
  • Vehicle – Identifying the right types of media for a given message and audience

This poster presents a generalizable framework for Strategic Communications for use in environmental decision-making. This poster is targeted to several primary audiences, including environmental decision-makers and a range of scientists (e.g., environmental scientists, social scientists, decision scientists, etc.) looking to present their important science in impactful ways to inform environmental decision-making.


  • Matthew Harwell, Ph.D., Senior Ecologist and Special Assistant, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - Gulf Ecology Division