PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology


Design for practice
Combine theoretical and intuitive thinking in science communication practice

Maarten van der Sanden  

Decision making in the turbulent daily practice of science communication is not an easy thing to do. Therefore, many science communication professionals use their implicit theoretical knowledge, experience and routine to decide, under time pressure, what to do. However, this decision behaviour does not necessarily give way to think about innovations in the practice of science communication. And even may lead to frustration of the professional, since he or she feels the need to change, but at the same time lacks the time, skills, knowledge and tools to deal with this. Any innovation, such as decisions tool for science communication professionals, needs to: 1) anticipate and buffer the professional's frustrations; 2) seamlessly fit into the daily practice of the professional and lead to tangible results; 3) stimulate the professional to slowly leave the path of just routine, and reflect on the possibility of doing things differently. In this workshop we would like to take the participants along the way of social design for innovations in science communication. During this design process we provide participants with design methodologies and a tool that invite them to explicitly combine theoretical and intuitive reasoning. We will do this in the context of science communication between members of an interdisciplinary research team working on new and emerging technologies. This directly leads to insights for possible solutions for designing communication processes that support the interdisciplinary research team in their collaboration and possible outreach. But foremost, this leads to reflections on one's own professional decision behaviour, moving between routine and innovation. The latter yields step-by-step changes in one's own daily science communication practice. By doing this, participants collaborate in our research on decision supportive tools for science communication professionals directly.

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