Why are we running this project?
According to the largest representative survey on dealing with the coronavirus, a large majority of people are aware of the hygiene rules and symptoms of an infection, but the authors recommend to explain background information more clearly.
Scientists such as virologist Christian Drosten, science journalists such as Kai Kupferschmidt, and influencer organizations like the Science Media Center are just three examples of the many excellent sources of information out there. Even though these have drastically increased their reach, they still usually address a segment of the population with an academic background. At the same time, information gaps tend to be plugged quickly with misinformation, half-truths, simplifications, and exaggerations, especially on social media sites, which in turn can trigger uncertainty and fuel conspiracy theories. Detailed fact checks are needed.
Furthermore, it has become apparent that certain topics and challenges have been pushed down the agenda. While the focus in the current early phase of the crisis is on how to contain and medically control the pandemic, the social ramifications and long-term effects will become more important later. How is the crisis changing how we live together as a society? Is now the time to critically examine and challenge our world views and lifestyles?
It is clearer now than ever before where the social responsibility of science and scientific communication lies and how important science journalism is to a functioning public discourse.
What are our goals?
We announced the funding initiative “Science Communication for Society – Coronavirus and Beyond” in order to reach a wide variety of target groups – especially people with few points of contact to science – with science-based information and to shape the management of this crisis based on the best information available.
Who were the target groups?
Individuals and organizations from German-speaking countries whose projects aimed to contribute to science-based communication about the coronavirus crisis and beyond were eligible to apply.
Who organizes and supports the project?
For many years, the support area Science of the Robert Bosch Stiftung has been committed to forging long-term connections between science and society. This call for submissions is in response to the current situation. It supplements our existing support for new approaches in science communication and science journalism. Projects realized under this strategy include, among others: the “Prize for University Communication” with the Hochschulrektorenkonferenz (German Rectors’ Conference), the “SILBERSALZ Science & Media Festival”, “Falling Walls Engage”, the “Berlin School of Public Engagement and Open Science” together with the Berlin Natural History Museum and the Humboldt University, think tank “Rocking Science Journalism” at the MediaLabBayern, and the “Science Journalism Masterclass” with RiffReporter.