In recent years it has become widely accepted that scientists should discuss their work with different communities. Yet, in most countries science communication is not part of the formal education of researchers. We organized a pioneering workshop in Portugal to train scientists to communicate with lay audiences. Evaluation shows that participants feel more confident and are more pro-active in communicating, suggesting that a low budget activity can improve the participation of scientists. However, as we will discuss there is scope for improvement, raising the challenge to the PCST network to play an important role in setting goals and promoting exchange of practices.

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 [PCST]
PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Traning scientists to communicate with lay audiences
Successes and limitations of a science communication workshop

Mónica Bettencourt Dias   University of Cambridge

Ana Godinho Coutinho   Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência

Sofia Jorge Araújo   Institut de Biología Molecular de Barcelona

In recent years it has become widely accepted that scientists should discuss their work with different communities. Yet, in most countries science communication is not part of the formal education of researchers. We organized a pioneering workshop in Portugal to train scientists to communicate with lay audiences. Evaluation shows that participants feel more confident and are more pro-active in communicating, suggesting that a low budget activity can improve the participation of scientists. However, as we will discuss there is scope for improvement, raising the challenge to the PCST network to play an important role in setting goals and promoting exchange of practices.

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