Professors Neil Maiden and Suzanne Franks discuss re-examining the role of science communication through journalism, social media and museums.

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City, University of London is part of a key consortium of science communication researchers, editors, communicators, journalists and science journalists, digital creativity and data science experts and environmental scientists working together under the QUEST (Quality and effectiveness in science and technology communication) project, to re-examine the role of Science Communication.

QUEST is a € 1.2 million project which will be funded by the EU Commission and will be led by Venice International University (VIU).

During the two-year project researchers and experts will investigate science communication in three strands - journalism, social media, and museums through a number possible of case studies, which may include climate change, vaccines, and Artificial Intelligence.

The final aim is to take stock of science communication today, to define quality criteria, to provide supporting tools for journalists, social media managers and museums facilitators, in order to ultimately offer citizens effective and reliable communication on scientific topics that generally have a significant impact on their daily lives, such as those selected as case studies.

Professor Suzanne Franks, Head of the Department of Journalism at City, said:

“I am delighted to be part of this significant project and to co-operate with partners across Europe. We have taught science journalism at City for some years and this work will help us to assess the current state of science journalism and also improve the curriculum for the emerging generation of journalists.”

Professor Neil Maiden, Professor of Digital Creativity at Cass Business School said:

“City brings a unique combination of expertise and competencies in science, journalism, artificial intelligence and designing digital technologies to this consortium. We will acquire new research-led insights, competencies and techniques with which to educate and support science communication and journalism.”

“It is clear that the way we communicate and write about science to wider audiences is at a cross-roads. A highly successful outcome would be to reframe how science journalism and communication can reach the audiences that currently reject science, for example, climate change deniers and parents who refuse to inoculate their children against common diseases.”


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