The initative for NeFCA’s new division on Science Communication was taken by Prof. Noëlle Aarts, Prof. Ionica Smeets, Bart Vanhaelewyn, MA., and Dr. Ini Vanwesenbeeck. They identified that scholars in this field did not yet have a conference in the Netherlands and Flanders at which they could share their research and build networks. Several scholars started attending the annual Etmaal van de Communicatiewetenchap in order to connect with communication scholars. Soon it became apparent that their research did not seem to fit within any of the existing divisions. A Science Communication division within NeFCA with its own events and subsessions at the annual Etmaal van de Communicatiewetenchap will help to strengthen the field of Science Communication and broaden the scope of NeFCA.

The aim of Science Communication research is to gain insight in relevant aspects of the interaction between scientists and between scientists and non-scientists during and after the research process. Relevant research topics are, amongst others: framing of scientific knowledge by different publics, the interplay between scientific and local/contextual knowledge, the coverage of scientific topics in the media, forms of citizen science, engaging the public in science musea, the role of social media in science communication, and issues related to Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI).

The steering committee of the division consists of Prof. dr. Ionica Smeets (Leiden University), Prof. dr. Noelle Aarts (RU Nijmegen), Dr. Ini Vanwesenbeeck (Tilburg University), Dr. Éva Kalmár  (TU Delft), and Ingrid van Marion (Université Libre de Bruxelles). Aart van Stekelenburg (RU Nijmegen) and Bart Vanhaelewyn (Ghent University) are the PhD representatives.

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