On December 13th and 14th, the kick-off meeting of the European project CONCISE (Communication role on perception and beliefs of EU Citizens about Science) was held at the House of Science from CSIC, in Valencia (Spain).
The importance of the CONCISE project lies in the search for a standard of indicators to improve scientific communication. To this end, researchers of the consortium will carry out public citizen consultations in five different countries (Spain, Portugal, Italy, Poland and Slovakia) where the opinion of 500 volunteer citizens will be recorded. The consultations will be transcribed and analysed with a corpus linguistic software to identify different markers that will help the research staff in scientific communication, the political and scientific communities, science journalists and the general public, to communicate more directly and effectively, and thus avoid misleading speeches that generate distrust and misunderstandings. CONCISE is focused on four specific topics of current relevance: vaccines, the use of complementary and alternative medicines, climate change and genetically modified organisms. However, its results will be scalable and its methodology can be applied to other scientific subjects and to European countries to promote, both qualitatively and quantitatively, scientific communication throughout Europe.
The great diversity of this consortium will allow to discuss and investigate at a European level the role of science communication in society taking into account the media, policy makers, scientific personnel, disseminators and social entities. To do this, the partners will analyse the channels through which EU citizens acquire their scientific knowledge and how these influence beliefs, perceptions and opinions.