Research and science communication are usually about finding tools, formats, and different media that can be used to successfully communicate research findings to an interested public. There is often a lack of discussion about the fact that it is not just about “conveying knowledge” or getting social actors “involved” in one’s own research but about critically reflecting on the academic research practices, which are still shaped by power asymmetries, by privileges and exclusions.
What kinds of knowledge, research, methods, language(s), and sources are recognized as valid by research institutions? What kinds are marginalized? This kind of hierarchization can have the consequence that lead to actors outside of universities or museums, and those who are often referred to as “diverse members of the public,” are not being reached. Instead, some communication practices actually exacerbate discrimination, exclusion, and barriers for the exact people whose perspectives plays a considerable role in determining the social relevance of our work.
Alongside critically reflecting on power structures, we think it is important to combine the conventional digital and analogue formats of research and science communication with experimental and data-ethical formats.
We are delighted that you are interested in discussing this and entering into a critical exchange with us. Take a look at our press area, our Twitter, and Instagram, or at our blog and our events. Our Associate for Research and Science Communication and Participation, Dr. Pegah Byroum-Wand, is happy to answer your enquiries.