Special Session SS8  3 April 2018

Engaging the public with astronomy and space science research

Aims and scope

Public engagement is becoming an increasingly important component of research projects. In the UK, the Research Excellence Framework (REF) has prompted a shift towards researchers looking to engage public audiences with their research specifically, as opposed to general topics within astronomy and space science. There is also increased focus on evaluating public engagement projects, in order to demonstrate the impact that the engagement has had on the target audience.

This session will provide an opportunity to discuss public engagement in a wider, European, context, allowing researchers, public engagement professionals, and science communicators to come together to examine the similarities and differences in how public engagement is carried out across the continent. The session will comprise a mixture of invited and contributed talks, panel Q&As with the speakers, and scheduled discussion time. We will invite speakers to present examples of successful innovative public engagement projects, and share their expertise. We also invite contributions from people involved in public engagement within the European astronomy and space science community on topics including, but not limited to, techniques for reaching diverse audiences, citizen science, online engagement, and impact and evaluation. We would like to encourage talks which not only showcase activities but provide tips and best practices to the community.

We intend for the session to be open and of use to all working in the astronomy and space science sector, whether they are an experienced public engagement practitioner, or are just getting started.


Invited speakers

Scientific organisers
Jen Gupta (University of Portsmouth) Edward Gomez (Las Cumbres Observatory) Sheila Kanani (Royal Astronomical Society) Heather Campbell (University of Surrey)


Updated on Tue Sep 12 16:10:28 CEST 2017