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Promoting Science Literacy and Awareness across the Globe: the Role of Scientists as Science Ambassadors


Tuttle, Matthew J; Cejas, Daniela; Kang, Donghoon; Muchaamba, Francis; Goncarovs, Britta; Ozakman, Yaprak; Aziz, Fatima; Orelle, Arnaud (2023). Promoting Science Literacy and Awareness across the Globe: the Role of Scientists as Science Ambassadors. Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education, 24(2):e00041-23.

Abstract

Science literacy has many personal and societal benefits that allows for better informed decision-making. Although the importance of science literacy is recognized globally, there are many challenges associated with its promotion. Scientists are more frequently engaging with nonscientific audiences through public outreach activities and with increasing support from institutions and professional societies. This is especially true regarding microbiologists and other related professionals since the start of the global 2019 coronavirus disease pandemic heightened the need to convey novel and rapidly evolving scientific information to lay audiences. The means by which professionals engage with these audiences affect the efficacy of the relay of scientific information. One method of engagement is the "ambassador approach," which aims to establish dialogue among different groups of people and scientists. In this perspective article, we discuss this approach, highlighting activities for the promotion of science literacy organized by the American Society for Microbiology Ambassador Program and similar programs of other scientific societies. We discuss the benefits and challenges of implementing an ambassador approach, propose potential improvements that could be made to existing programs promoting science literacy, and ultimately advocate for increased implementation of science ambassador programs.

Abstract

Science literacy has many personal and societal benefits that allows for better informed decision-making. Although the importance of science literacy is recognized globally, there are many challenges associated with its promotion. Scientists are more frequently engaging with nonscientific audiences through public outreach activities and with increasing support from institutions and professional societies. This is especially true regarding microbiologists and other related professionals since the start of the global 2019 coronavirus disease pandemic heightened the need to convey novel and rapidly evolving scientific information to lay audiences. The means by which professionals engage with these audiences affect the efficacy of the relay of scientific information. One method of engagement is the "ambassador approach," which aims to establish dialogue among different groups of people and scientists. In this perspective article, we discuss this approach, highlighting activities for the promotion of science literacy organized by the American Society for Microbiology Ambassador Program and similar programs of other scientific societies. We discuss the benefits and challenges of implementing an ambassador approach, propose potential improvements that could be made to existing programs promoting science literacy, and ultimately advocate for increased implementation of science ambassador programs.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, not_refereed, further contribution
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinärwissenschaftliches Institut > Institute of Food Safety and Hygiene
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
570 Life sciences; biology
Uncontrolled Keywords:General Agricultural and Biological Sciences, General Immunology and Microbiology, General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology, Education
Language:English
Date:22 August 2023
Deposited On:28 Feb 2024 11:58
Last Modified:30 Jun 2024 01:40
Publisher:American Society for Microbiology
ISSN:1935-7877
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1128/jmbe.00041-23
PubMed ID:37614894
  • Content: Published Version
  • Language: English
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)