Observing the way a "neutral" subject such as Science is treated in the media is, paradoxically, a good way to approach the cultural diversity between countries. Science news - in a wide sense in which we include items about medicine, environment or technology - crosses borders more easily than other aspects of cultural or political life. Differences, both in content and in modes of presentation, tell us how the scientific institution appears in the public arena, show the roles experts can play, illustrate the relations between science and democracy, etc.   

We propose to present a comparative analysis of science news in six European countries (France, Belgium, Switzerland, Great Britain, Ireland and Italy) on a corpus collected by the ISME group. It covers the evening news bulletins on a public and a private channel in each country, during the month of October 1994.   

A rapid quantitative analysis will be presented, showing remarkable differences between countries, particularly in the choice of news items. We shall nevertheless concentrate on more qualitative aspects concerning the way relations between science and society or reactions to science-related problems are presented. This analysis will also point out differences in the role of journalists and in world visions shared by different channels in different countries.
 

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Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Science in European TV news

Suzanne de Chéveigné   CNRS

Naima Cheddadi  

Observing the way a "neutral" subject such as Science is treated in the media is, paradoxically, a good way to approach the cultural diversity between countries. Science news - in a wide sense in which we include items about medicine, environment or technology - crosses borders more easily than other aspects of cultural or political life. Differences, both in content and in modes of presentation, tell us how the scientific institution appears in the public arena, show the roles experts can play, illustrate the relations between science and democracy, etc.   

We propose to present a comparative analysis of science news in six European countries (France, Belgium, Switzerland, Great Britain, Ireland and Italy) on a corpus collected by the ISME group. It covers the evening news bulletins on a public and a private channel in each country, during the month of October 1994.   

A rapid quantitative analysis will be presented, showing remarkable differences between countries, particularly in the choice of news items. We shall nevertheless concentrate on more qualitative aspects concerning the way relations between science and society or reactions to science-related problems are presented. This analysis will also point out differences in the role of journalists and in world visions shared by different channels in different countries.
 

A copy of the full paper has not yet been submitted.

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