Since  1985  the  British  Psychological  Society  has  operated  a  professionally  staffed  Press  Office  in  its UK  headquarters.  The  Press  Office  brief  is  to  take  psychology  and  the  work  of  psychologists,  both scientific researchers and applied practitioners, to the public via the media.


The  paper  will  explain;  the  history  and  development  of  the  Society?s  media  policy;  the  day-to-day activity  devised  to  implement  the  policy  (including  conference  activity,  media  training,  use  of journals/scientific media briefings/occasional papers); the resources needed to run such an operation; some of the outcomes, both positive and negative.

The paper will also look at future plans and issues based on the lessons learnt so far; for instance, can psychology ?sell?  hard  science  to  the  media,  can  psychology  get  quality  TV  coverage,  can  psychology marginalise the ?rent-a-quotes??

Although  the  paper  will  be  wholly  based  on  the  discipline  of  psychology  and  the  activities  of  The British  Psychological  Society,  the  experiences  are  relevant  to  other  disciplines  and  probably  other countries.
 

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PCST Network

Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Fifty phone calls a day and three hundred press cuttings a week
Psychology media coverage in the UK

Stephen White   The British Psychological Society

Since  1985  the  British  Psychological  Society  has  operated  a  professionally  staffed  Press  Office  in  its UK  headquarters.  The  Press  Office  brief  is  to  take  psychology  and  the  work  of  psychologists,  both scientific researchers and applied practitioners, to the public via the media.


The  paper  will  explain;  the  history  and  development  of  the  Society?s  media  policy;  the  day-to-day activity  devised  to  implement  the  policy  (including  conference  activity,  media  training,  use  of journals/scientific media briefings/occasional papers); the resources needed to run such an operation; some of the outcomes, both positive and negative.

The paper will also look at future plans and issues based on the lessons learnt so far; for instance, can psychology ?sell?  hard  science  to  the  media,  can  psychology  get  quality  TV  coverage,  can  psychology marginalise the ?rent-a-quotes??

Although  the  paper  will  be  wholly  based  on  the  discipline  of  psychology  and  the  activities  of  The British  Psychological  Society,  the  experiences  are  relevant  to  other  disciplines  and  probably  other countries.
 

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

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