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How To Communicate Science in the 21st Century

Posted On July 2, 2012 by

Science communication has changed. If you know the tricks, you can be more effective than ever. Credit: flickr user Trondheim Byarkiv

Scientific inquiry is about the pursuit of knowledge to improve our world, so why is it so hard to communicate information that can help everyone? Actually, it doesn’t have to be – just follow these three steps I learned at the Science of Science Communication Colloquium:

1) Meet your audience where they are. It’s easy to assume the more someone knows about a scientific issue, the more they’ll care about it. However, there’s little empirical evidence to support this theory. Other factors, such as age, education, political party, religion, etc., may influence a person more than their understanding of an issue. You can help a person better understand a scientific concept, but unless you can appeal to their emotions or something they already care about, knowledge alone may not increase their support.

So, how does a scientist communicate effectively? Continue reading »