This paper seeks to identify the dominant interests and approaches of science communication communities in Europe over recent years. The paper presents findings from a study of contributions from European participants to three conferences each of ECSITE, the European network of science museums and centres, and of the international Public Communication of Science and Technology (PCST) network. The full dataset comprises a total of 1,000 abstracts of proposals to these conferences. The analysis of these submissions identified principally the types of science communication activity in focus, the various sectors of the public, or publics, for which those activities were intended, and the model of communication informing these contributions, grouped as three‘families’ of models: dissemination, engagement and conversation. The differences and similarities in the content for the two series of conferences are explored in terms of preferred types of activity, target publics and models. One guiding question of the study was: How strong is the evidence across Europe for the frequently declared “dialogic turn”? It is widely assumed that science communication has changed mode decisively over the past decade, This paper examines the evidence for such a trend towards commitment to dialogue- or participation-oriented public science communication. The study was undertaken by the Celsius group at Dublin City University on commission to ECSITE, as the co-ordinator of the EUfunded project, PLACES (Platform of Local Authorities and Communicators Engaged in Science), 2010-2014.

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 [PCST]
PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

What are european science communication communities talking about?

Brian Trench   Dublin City University, Ireland

Francesca Camilli   Science communicator, Italy

Padraig Murphy   Dublin City University, Ireland

This paper seeks to identify the dominant interests and approaches of science communication communities in Europe over recent years. The paper presents findings from a study of contributions from European participants to three conferences each of ECSITE, the European network of science museums and centres, and of the international Public Communication of Science and Technology (PCST) network. The full dataset comprises a total of 1,000 abstracts of proposals to these conferences. The analysis of these submissions identified principally the types of science communication activity in focus, the various sectors of the public, or publics, for which those activities were intended, and the model of communication informing these contributions, grouped as three‘families’ of models: dissemination, engagement and conversation. The differences and similarities in the content for the two series of conferences are explored in terms of preferred types of activity, target publics and models. One guiding question of the study was: How strong is the evidence across Europe for the frequently declared “dialogic turn”? It is widely assumed that science communication has changed mode decisively over the past decade, This paper examines the evidence for such a trend towards commitment to dialogue- or participation-oriented public science communication. The study was undertaken by the Celsius group at Dublin City University on commission to ECSITE, as the co-ordinator of the EUfunded project, PLACES (Platform of Local Authorities and Communicators Engaged in Science), 2010-2014.

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

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