Back to top

Science Communication in Policy Making

Unlocking the Power of Science Communication In Policy Making

Effective science communication is a crucial aspect of research processes to ensure that research findings benefit our societies. Scientific results must be made available to other researchers to continue the advancement of knowledge, to entrepreneurs to create useful products and services, and to policy makers to build evidence-based knowledge. Scientific processes should be better explained to the general public to inform and inspire them, and to engage them in the dialogue between research and society. The importance of science communication was highlighted in particular during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, our societies face other equally crucial challenges (such as those related to health, climate, and access to clean water) where the availability of research outcomes is of paramount importance to addressing them.

About the Conference

In recent years, researchers have become increasingly involved in public communication programmes; the COVID-19 pandemic and other global challenges have accelerated this trend. Despite this, misinformation and ‘fake news’ about important social issues – such as artificial intelligence, big data, food security, energy, and climate change – continue to spread through social and new media. This has led to growing international recognition that science communication is an essential aspect of research culture.

Science Europe has as one of its priorities to “strengthen the voice of science in and for society”. As part of this, science communication has emerged as its own priority topic. In June 2022, Science Europe published a Position Statement that aligns its Member Organisations in the initiation of actions that contribute to fostering better and more effective evidence-based science communication. This statement was produced in full collaboration with the Working Group on Communication and adopted by Science Europe’s General Assembly.

Outcomes of the Conference

As the overarching objective was to actively promote the seamless integration of science communication as an integral component within research programmes, two types of outcomes were envisaged:

  • Strategic conclusions targeting policy makers on how to integrate more and better science communication in research programmes. These conclusions will feed the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU R&I priorities.
  • Longer and more detailed recommendations for Science Europe members, including, for instance, suggestions on integrating science communication into research programmes and enhancing science communication training offers.