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The shadowlands of science communication in academia — definitions, problems, and possible solutions

Gani, Shahzad; Arnal, Louise; Beattie, Lucy; Hillier, John; Illingworth, Sam; Lanza, Tiziana; Mohadjer, Solmaz; Pulkkinen, Karoliina; Roop, Heidi; Stewart, Iain; Stiller-Reeve, Mathew; von Elverfeldt, Kirsten; Zihms, Stephanie


Shahzad Gani

Louise Arnal

Lucy Beattie

John Hillier

Tiziana Lanza

Solmaz Mohadjer

Karoliina Pulkkinen

Heidi Roop

Iain Stewart

Mathew Stiller-Reeve

Kirsten von Elverfeldt

Stephanie Zihms


Science communication is important for researchers, including those working in the geosciences. However, much of this work takes place in “shadowlands” that are neither fully seen nor understood. With the increasing expectation in academia that all researchers should participate in science communication, there is an urgent need to address some of the major issues that lurk in these “shadowlands”. Here the editorial team of Geoscience Communication seeks to shine a light on the “shadowlands” of geoscience communication and suggest some solutions and examples of effective practice. The issues broadly fall under three categories: 1) unclear or harmful objectives; 2) poor quality and lack of rigor; and 3) exploitation of science communicators working within academia. Ameliorating these will require: 1) clarity in objectives and audiences; 2) adequately training science communicators; and 3) giving science communication equivalent recognition to other professional activities.

Presentation Conference Type Presentation / Talk
Conference Name EGU 2023
Start Date Apr 23, 2023
End Date Apr 28, 2023
Deposit Date Feb 23, 2023