Why should we promote public engagement with science?

Stilgoe, Jack, Lock, Simon J and Wilsdon, James (2014) Why should we promote public engagement with science? Public Understanding of Science, 23 (1). pp. 4-15. ISSN 0963-6625

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This introductory essay to a special issue of Public Understanding of Science (guest edited by Jack Stilgoe, Simon Lock & James Wilsdon) looks back on the two decades since the journal was launched. Drawing on the invited commentaries in the special issue, we can see narratives of continuity and change around the practice and politics of public engagement with science. Public engagement would seem to be a necessary but insufficient part of opening up science and its governance. Those of us who have been involved in advocating, conducting and evaluating public engagement practice could be accused of over-promising. If we, as social scientists, are going to continue a normative commitment to the idea of public engagement, we should therefore develop new lines of argument and analysis. Our support for the idea of public engagement needs qualifying, as part of a broader, more ambitious interest in the idea of publicly engaged science.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Depositing User: James Wilsdon
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2014 13:29
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2019 02:35
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/47849

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