Communicating Translational Stem Cell Research to the General Public: Challenges and Suggestions
This chapter aims to define the wide societal context in which the stem cell research was born and is developing, and to guide the establishment of dissemination methods that correlates with the reality of modern society. An important component of success is to secure quality contributions from academics, by providing them with increased experience, meaningful acknowledgement and proper support that we would expect from a member of our own working team. The conduct of outreach programs should fully adopt the democratic ideal: Citizen’s freedom of choice needs to be reinforced by scientific knowledge, with respect for diversity of opinions and beliefs. This construction places scientific reality – which is in essence fully neutral – above personal views in order to feed them. The scientist’s duty to report to society complements the citizen’s duty to make informed choices. Finally, a long term plan in dissemination programmes allows the building of networks of science communicators and relationships of trust that are crucial for the continuity of science developments, especially in research fields that are not unanimously supported.
KeywordsControversy Citizen Dissemination Society Outreach
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