A large number of national and international studies and events in the last few years have shown that there is a growing demand for participation in scientific and technological issues, for example as contributing members of research on rare diseases. A trend which appears even more clearly from the last surveys. In fact, according to more than 80% of the Italians, “citizens should be more involved in the choices that concern science and technology”.
More specifically, more than four Italians out of ten indicate that the priorities of public investments in research should be defined by “all citizens” – compared to 26% who would delegate it to scientists and 18% who would leave it to the politicians. The demand for more involvement is strongest among young people (53% of 15 to 19-year-olds), which allows us to predict that it will be a growing trend. Who wants to have more say in the decision making is often a regular reader of scientific works and a visitor to science festivals and meetings with scientists.
In short, opportunities for communication are welcome, but transparency and inclusion in the processes of decision making remain an outstanding matter.