400 delegates, 27 seminars, 350 presentations (among which some refers to Observa’s researches): at the 10th PCST (Public Communication of Science and Technology) conference, held from 23th to 27th June 2008 science communicators, researchers, science writers, press officers, and librarians from all over the world are meeting and taking part in a playful but serious discussion about how to develop science communication.
The conference is titled Bridges to the future, which is well suited to the locations choosen, Malmoe, Copenhagen and Lund.
Emerging issues in science and society are the core of the programme, and several sessions are devoted to climate change and communicating risks. One session, “Medical messages in the media – reliable information or science for sale?” deals with the difficulties medical journalists have to maintain their integrity and independence while under pressure from “Big Pharma” and other pressure groups.
The participation of representatives from 19 countries. will inspire much discussion about the impact of local culture and context on science coverage, for example a comparative analysis between North American and French coverage of climate change. Other sessions will be devoted to science journalism training in developing countries with participation from South Africa and Australia, and science on radio and TV in different cultural environments.
Another issue concerns the development of new channels, media and arenas in order to strengthen the dialogue between the research community and surrounding society. Visualization, virtual events and how to use web 2.0 are examples of seminars dealing with interactive technology to enhance public involvement.
The conference will be somewhat different, serious but at the same time playful. In addition to giving the participants a chance to expand their network across cultures and professions and to share knowledge with colleagues from all over the world, there will be challenges of a different kind, communication assignments and dilemmas, controversial and with an ethical conflict.
During the conference, the Observa Science in Society Monitor and it most recent researches on science in society issues will be presented.
Further information at www.vr.se/pcst