Scientific Communication and its Publics

 "If you impede the communication of science, you impede science itself." - Dr. Jeff Hutchings, Professor, Department of Biology, Dalhousie University

This research theme explores how scientists communicate with one another, with their objects, and with the wider world.

The humanistic study of science in Canada has been particularly interested in the material and cultural aspects of scientific and technological exchange, from the interaction of scientists in early modern coffee houses, to public audiences, to that of government scientists and engineers with local fishers or aboriginals, to the development of Canadian science and technology policy. The study of scientific communication expands upon recent work in media theory, the public understanding of science, the transfer of knowledge across societal domains and competing interpretations, demonstration and questions of matters of fact, popularization, science museums, and science in newspapers and journals.

Recent Canadian and international studies of scientific communication have come to question the dominant model of scientific communication under which only isolated researchers produce scientific knowledge, which is later translated (often into simplified and distorted forms) for a lay population. This dominant model often neglects the extent to which translation into new contexts creates new knowledge, something we would seek to emphasize in our cluster research.

Active Canadian research into this theme will, for example, intensify research on how knowledge is articulated in a Canadian and international perspective, and moves within scientific communities on the one hand and between scientists, public groups, and industry on the other.


Silencing Scientists. CBC Radio's The Current Feature Oct. 26, 2010

What is the difference between "public" and "publics"?

Canadian Science Policy Centre

Making Publics (McGill)

Canadian Science Writers Association

Canadian Science and Technology Museum

Science Communication/Journalism Programs in Canada

Science Media Centre of Canada

Aldo Leopold Leaders Program 

preparing environmental scientists to engage with the public and interact with the media.                      Article

Council of Canadian Academies

Other (Links)

Articles (In Process)

Upcoming Theme News and Events

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Past Theme News and Events




Video (from U. Alberta segment) now available on our partner site       HERESaskatoon, Edmonton and Calgary: Science and its Publics National Lecture Series Presents... [+]




Green College, UBC: Susan Solomon (Political Science, Toronto) “Constructing the Biography of a Scientific Go-Between: A.N. Rubakin, Soviet Public Health and Russian-French Space between... [+]




Toronto: Science and its Publics National Lecture Series Presents Part 4: Access Denied: Medicine, Trust, and Experimental Treatments VIDEO AND STREAM (USE EXPLORER OR SAFARI ONLY) HERE Live... [+]




Halifax: Science and its Publics National Lecture Series Presents Part 3: STREAMED LIVE AT: AND streamed    here Video available to view here... [+]




Thursday, November 25th, 2010 at 6:00 pm McGill University The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Public Affairs and the Situating Science Knowledge Cluster present: Science and its Publics Lecture... [+]




The Science and its Publics Lecture Series launch was a great success with over 300 in attendance, great partnerships, discussion and live stream Qs too. See below or click on title for more... [+]




Silencing Scientists CBC Radio The Current Feature Oct. 26, 2010 CBC’s The Current featured the launch of this website: [+]




Situating Science is pleased to announce the launch of a new national lecture series, Science and its Publics, with the Canadian Centre for Ethics and Publics Affairs. Click on the title or "Read... [+]




Rebecca Kukla (Philosophy, Georgetown). "Medicalization, Justice, and the Definition of Health." Thursday, February 3, 2010. 5:00 pm. Green College Coach House. [+]