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Mar 28, 2022 Practice Insight
Valuing visitors' knowledge: the experience of Association Traces at the crossroads between science communication, participatory activities and social inclusion

by Matteo Merzagora, Claudia Aguirre Rios, Paul Boniface, Clementine Bricout and Celine Martineau

In this “practice insight” we present a series of experiences run by Association Traces, injecting participatory approaches into science engagement activities by valuing the knowledge of the public rather than focusing on their ignorance. Starting from the observation that a sort of hybridization is occurring between cultural activities and public engagement with science on one side, and co-creation and participatory activities on the other, we provide some insight on the features of each approach. Examples are then used to highlight the potential value of this hybridization: as a way of making participatory activity more recognizable and accessible to a wide audience; to ensure that scientists have a professional interest in engaging in the communication activity; to raise a sense of ownership and empowerment in the audience, etc. These examples will eventually show that participation may lead to science communication practices that are socially-inclusive and/or productive for research, and ideally both.

Volume 21 • Issue 02 • 2022 • Special Issue Participatory science communication for transformation (PCST2020+1)