Paper for 2008 PCST session Dialogical Science Communication and Publics in the Making
Today, science is discussed mainly in mass media. It is unusual for the public and researchers to meet face to face, even though everyone is affected by and pays for research. Much effort is directed towards enhancing the quality and quantity of popular science. But there has to be a demand for knowledge. Therefore, it is as important to listen to people and to get them involved, as it is to provide information.
Science catches people’s imagination when they perceive it as meaningful and relevant, and view it in its proper context. If so, people are very interested in discussing science – both according to our experiences and to the several attitudinal surveys VA has conducted in Sweden.