Social inclusion

19/12/2008

The importance the Brazilian government has given in the last few years to the dissemination of science points out the necessity of a more discerning analysis about the establishment of this subject on the public agenda and the related public policies undertaken. This work tries to contribute to the debate as an inquiry about the policies to popularize and disseminate Science and Technology (S&T) established by the Science and Technology Popularization and Dissemination Department, which was created in 2004. In order to do so, theoretical references from Public Policy Analysis, the Studies of Science, Technology and Society (SSTS), and Public Communication of Science are used. Furthermore, we analyze some of the results from research on Science and Technology Understanding carried out in Brazil in 2006. As a final point, this associated approach aims at identifying some of the limiting factors related to science dissemination actions in Brazil.

20/09/2007

Two concepts seemingly distant from each other, scientific education and European citizenship, have been the basis for "SEDEC - Science Education for the Development of European Citizenship", a European project funded by the European Commission in the framework of the Socrates/Comenius programme, aiming at producing training material addressed to European teachers. Started in autumn 2005, the project will end in 2008 with an in-service training course for European teachers and educators.

20/09/2007

Probably among the first to deal with it, nearly sixty years ago, Norbert Wiener, the founding father of cybernetics (The human use of human beings. Cybernetics and Society, Houghton Mifflin Company, London, 1950), prefigured its opportunities, as well as its limitations. Today, it is a quite common belief. We have entered (are entering) a new, great era in the history of human society: the age of information and knowledge.

21/03/2007

NASA has decided to cut by 50% the next two-year budget for the Astrobiology Institute (NAI), and for all of the studies on life in outer space. This reduction follows an announcement made by Dr Michael Griffin, the Administrator of the space agency of the United States Government when, in addressing the Mars Society last summer, he clearly stated that xenobiology studies are marginal to the mission of NASA.

21/12/2005

In this paper I use the concepts “understanding of science” and “appreciation of science” to analyze selected case studies of current science communication in Denmark. The Danish science communication system has many similarities with science communication in other countries: the increasing political and scientific interest in science communication, the co-existence of many different kinds of science communication, and the multiple uses of the concepts of understanding vs. appreciation of science. I stress the international aspects of science communication, the national politico-scientific context as well as more local contexts as equally important conditions for understanding current Danish science communication.

21/06/2005

The death of Pope John Paul II, the "Polish pope", in Rome and the subsequent election of Benedict XVI, the "German pope", have been two great events gaining world-wide media coverage and affecting the whole world. This was due to Karol Wojtyla's ability to reach everyone's heart ­ thus once dubbed the "Great Communicator" ­ and to the Vatican's spiritual, cultural, and political influence all over the world. The death of Pope John Paul II and the election of Benedict XVI also concern science and science communication issues.

21/12/2004

The question was raised in the 4th November copy of The New York Times when it entitled the editorial of Garry Wills (political and cultural historian), regarding the re-election of George W. Bush, "The Day the Enlightenment Went Out". Wills' theory, with which the directors of the newspaper palpably concur, is that Bush was re-elected because "many more Americans believe in the Virgin Birth than in Darwin's theory of evolution".

21/09/2004

In the name of God is the heading chosen by some researchers from a Middle Eastern country for their posters in an international conference on chemistry which has recently been held in Paris. This powerful message preceded the results of the researchers' work on the morphology, molecular structure, as well as the physical, chemical and mechanical properties of advanced polymeric materials. It was an unexpected statement, an unusual message, though certainly not an unprecedented one. It had nonetheless a striking effect in the context of a scientific conference attended by thousands of people from various ethnic and religious backgrounds.

21/03/2004

At the beginning of the new millennium, science is not only a neutral system or an objective methodology of knowledge, but also the implicit basis of the totality of our culture. Though science and its derivates are omnipresent in daily life, its basic ideologies and functional mechanisms are in most cases not fully visible to the subject. In using the most evolved systematical-critical model of psychoanalysis provided by the French thinker Jacques Lacan (1901-1981), an enlightening analysis of western science can be made, which contributes not only to a better understanding of its own psychology, but also of the hidden ties between science and its current socio-cultural background.

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