Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP6

SS-ERC — Result In Brief

Project ID: 29011
Funded under: FP6-CITIZENS
Country: Italy

Bringing science and society closer together

A new handbook for science and society is aimed at bridging the gap between what people need and what research can provide. The real beneficiaries will be European citizens, for whom science and technology (S&T) now form an integral part of everyday life.
Bringing science and society closer together
The world is changing, and the world of science is no exception. The relationship between science and society, for example, is becoming more complex. More and more, citizens expect research to be transparent and to respond in a more dynamic way to their needs.

These new pressures are forcing scientific and technological researchers to consider the social dimensions of the work they do. At a minimum, closer cooperation among a broader and more diversified range of actors is required, including citizens' groups and social scientists. All of this can make research more difficult to steer and the results harder to interpret.

The EU-funded 'Project on social sciences and European research capacities' (SS-ERC) was set up to aid the development of new and more productive science/society relationships. The outcome is the 'Handbook on the socialisation of the scientific and technological (S&T) research'.

The handbook presents the results of research on current trends in S&T, carried out in five EU Member States: Denmark, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands and Slovenia. It also shows the results of experiments on different forms of cooperation between social researchers and natural scientists.

Finally, it lays out theoretical and practical orientations for identifying, interpreting and managing the new forces driving today's S&T.

The handbook represents a new resource for all research actors, from scientists to research administrators, to policymakers, entrepreneurs and leaders of civil society organisations.

While it will be useful to a wide collection of S&T stakeholders, policymakers are considered to be a primary target audience.

At European, national and local levels, those shaping research policy need to know what is being done, what should be done and who is most concerned. Ultimately, all sides stand to benefit from better and better targeted science.

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