As the Bayer Bee Care Program heads towards celebrating seven years of proactive outreach to a wide variety of stakeholders, exchanging knowledge and experiences, addressing questions and concerns, offering transparency on our activities and seeking opportunities to cooperate in the area of pollinator health through research and education, we are delighted to have just held our first ever Bee Care Science Workshop from 6-7th November, in Bonn, Germany.
The workshop brought together many of our scientific collaboration partners from around the world for the first time, to exchange on the current activities within the Bee Care Science Program and on other pollinator and pollination-related topics. The aim of the comprehensive Science Program, which comprises more than 30 projects worldwide, is to develop and test locally-appropriate, tailor-made solutions that provide real benefits to pollinators and to farmers. These projects look at topics such as pollinator ecology, honey bee health, crop pollination efficiency and the safety of pesticides to pollinators. Listening to the sound and feeling the energy from the active exchange on the different projects, during the poster breakfast session, for instance, was like standing amidst a number of beehives on a warm summer’s day.
While most people would agree that such cross-sector collaborations enable efficient resource use and stimulate innovation through cross-disciplinary exchange, perceptions seem to change when dealing with controversial topics like that regarding pollinators. To tackle this theme, part of the workshop was dedicated to science communication, exploring the question “How to communicate science in a politicized world?” After a thought-provoking speech, there was ample time to discuss this important topic.
Now, we can look back on a successful event, with engaged expert exchange, open, partly controversial debates, fascinating presentations and a lively atmosphere. And we are also looking forward – to sharing the findings and results from these projects, taking pride in contributing to bee and pollinator health via leading-edge, collaborative research.
By joining forces and establishing a true, global pollinator science network, we have the highest chance of contributing, with tangible results, to the health of bees and other pollinators.
Today’s societal challenges require the best of science – but are biases and unfounded preconceptions getting in the way?
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Our BEENOW articles follow Bee Care projects as they progress from start to end: