A major goal in the communication of science is to convey the added value of being involved in the quest for knowledge in contemporary society. A first and imperative step is to investigate the perception of the role of knowledge-workers from within the scientific institutions. We start from noticing a diffuse disenchantment among workers in scientific institutes concerning the mission of their institute. We think that it is necessary to propose events which can involve the entire personnel to foster the importance of being a knowledge worker. We propose a specific format for a series of seminars which do not fit into the regular scientific program nor into a public-talk series. These seminars should be given by professionals on interdisciplinary topics which involve both the scientific and the non-scientific personnel, and are tightly related to the working environment. The goal is to show that working in a scientific environment gives access to a wide pool of knowledge, which can significantly enrich our personal and professional life. We report the successful experience of two seasons of seminars at the Observatory of Trieste, presenting the results of a questionnaire conducted among the personnel of the Observatory. On a more general ground, we conclude that in contemporary society, communication of science must rely on a direct involvement of the public: making the knowledge-workers fully aware of their role is a first, necessary step.">
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Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Fostering the role of knowledge-workers from within scientific institutes

Paolo Tozzi   INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste

A major goal in the communication of science is to convey the added value of being involved in the quest for knowledge in contemporary society. A first and imperative step is to investigate the perception of the role of knowledge-workers from within the scientific institutions. We start from noticing a diffuse disenchantment among workers in scientific institutes concerning the mission of their institute. We think that it is necessary to propose events which can involve the entire personnel to foster the importance of being a knowledge worker. We propose a specific format for a series of seminars which do not fit into the regular scientific program nor into a public-talk series. These seminars should be given by professionals on interdisciplinary topics which involve both the scientific and the non-scientific personnel, and are tightly related to the working environment. The goal is to show that working in a scientific environment gives access to a wide pool of knowledge, which can significantly enrich our personal and professional life. We report the successful experience of two seasons of seminars at the Observatory of Trieste, presenting the results of a questionnaire conducted among the personnel of the Observatory. On a more general ground, we conclude that in contemporary society, communication of science must rely on a direct involvement of the public: making the knowledge-workers fully aware of their role is a first, necessary step.

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