Since 2018, the OeAD Center for Citizen Science and OeAD-Young-Science have invited to network meetings for the contact persons at universities, universities of applied sciences, universities of education and non-university research institutions. The network meetings offer space to get to know each other and to exchange experiences. Each meeting focuses on a different topic.
At the network meeting at the end of March, the topic chosen was "Reducing skepticism about science in Austria". Based on the results of the Eurobarometer survey "EU citizen's knowledge and attitudes towards science and technology", which gave Austria a poor report card with regard to trust in science and research, it was discussed how science skepticism in this country can be countered. The young science and citizen science contacts also reflected on the science communication activities at their own research institutions.
It became apparent that the contact persons' research institutions have numerous offers to attract people from all segments of the population to the research institutions. These are aimed at different age groups, such as children's and youth universities or offerings for older people, such as the SeniorInnenUNI at IMC FH Krems, as well as initiatives that address a broad public across age groups. The active involvement of the public in research projects through Citizen Science also represents an opportunity for science communication. In addition, outreach programs in schools - whether face-to-face or online - are very popular. In addition to the Young Science Ambassadors of the OeAD, there are offers such as Zoom a Scientist at IST Austria or webinars for school classes. In view of the Eurobarometer survey, however, the extent to which existing science communication measures are sufficient was also questioned.
During the network meeting, the staff of the OeAD Center for Citizen Science also presented the campaign "Living Science - Shaping the Future" with the hashtag #YoungScienceRocks.
No contact person yet?
The network meetings are aimed exclusively at Young Science contact persons and Citizen Science contact persons. If your institution would also like to nominate a contact person, please contact the staff of the OeAD Center for Citizen Science at email@example.com.