PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology


The many failures of modern science shows

Joseph Roche  

Science shows are a form of science communication that are often provided for large audiences but generally lack a research-informed approach to their production. These shows have the potential to engage diverse audiences in novel ways that are free of the constraints of a formal learning environment, but are consistently produced and performed by practitioners that do not have expertise in the fields of science, education, communication or other research discipline. In order for this form of science communication to find a place in 21st century education it requires a comprehensive upgrade to embrace modern pedagogical approaches. We wish to explore the benefits and barriers to producing science shows that are produced and performed by experts in the areas of science, communication and education. Using interactive technology to provide new methods for science show performers to engage with audiences and collect opinions and feedback directly, we will present a paper on the learnings from our investigation of a number of trends relating to public performances of science shows. We will also present the results of a modern research-informed science show. Our discussion of the failures of modern science shows will take the form of an oral presentation of a paper and is suggested for the Conference Theme: "Evaluating public communication of science and technology".

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