Looking at science communication at this moment, one sees new theories being developed and many descriptions of best practices. However, the connection between communication theory and practice is poorly understood. Professionals in the field of science communication are therefore often not connected to the theoretical developments in science communication and vice versa. This hinders the development of science communication theory and also leads  to a less effective science communication practice.

Our paper and presentation therefore will focus on the development of the connection between science communication theory and science communication practice. We aim to build a bridge between the science communication researcher and the science communication professional by designing and optimizing a science communication process. Designing and optimizing science communication is a process in which social, cultural, economic, and technical aspects are connected in such a way that the best possible communication effects can be achieved.

The communication spectrum is a design instrument that links theoretical concepts and practical insights to build science communication processes in an effective and meaningful way. This instrument gives an integrated overview of possible choices that are made to shape the science communication process. Parts of the process are given more emphasis by connecting them to science communication problem analysis. Problem analysis therefore provides choices that could be made when faced with a specific communication problem. Using the science communication spectrum and existing design theories like problem analysis for science communication processes is - as far as we know - new to the field of science communication in theory and practice.

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Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Designing science communication processes
Bridging the gap between theory and practice with a science communication spectrum

Maarten van der Sanden   Delft University of Technology, Section of Science Education and Communication, The Netherlands

Caroline Wehrmann   Delft University of Technology, Section of Science Education and Communication, The Netherlands

Looking at science communication at this moment, one sees new theories being developed and many descriptions of best practices. However, the connection between communication theory and practice is poorly understood. Professionals in the field of science communication are therefore often not connected to the theoretical developments in science communication and vice versa. This hinders the development of science communication theory and also leads  to a less effective science communication practice.

Our paper and presentation therefore will focus on the development of the connection between science communication theory and science communication practice. We aim to build a bridge between the science communication researcher and the science communication professional by designing and optimizing a science communication process. Designing and optimizing science communication is a process in which social, cultural, economic, and technical aspects are connected in such a way that the best possible communication effects can be achieved.

The communication spectrum is a design instrument that links theoretical concepts and practical insights to build science communication processes in an effective and meaningful way. This instrument gives an integrated overview of possible choices that are made to shape the science communication process. Parts of the process are given more emphasis by connecting them to science communication problem analysis. Problem analysis therefore provides choices that could be made when faced with a specific communication problem. Using the science communication spectrum and existing design theories like problem analysis for science communication processes is - as far as we know - new to the field of science communication in theory and practice.

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