Alexandra TIGANAS, University of Bucharest, Romania
There is a lot of emphasis on how to train scientists and researchers from all disciplines to communicate with the public (or publics, if you acknowledge there is no such thing as "the public" anymore), but not enough inquiry about the relative position of the scientist and its audience. While researching different approaches to training young scientists to interact better with the public, I found out that I need to work with them to reassess the scientist's position in society. I realized that making them more competent in public speaking or event organization or website building, while they still wanted to talk down to the public and expected to be listened to and followed just because they `had the knowledge,` was a losing proposition. That the better they were at communicating and the more they did it from this position, the more the disconnect between science and society will increase. What I propose to share at the conference are some results of the action-research I have done on this subject during the past three years, offering a few suggestions on how an education intervention (a course or a workshop) could help young and not so young scientists reassess their position in relation to the public.