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MY SCIENCE European Program for Young Journalists

Final Report Summary - MY SCIENCE (My science European program for young journalists)

MY SCIENCE represents a support action aimed at improving the wider public's understanding of EU research, as well as the scientists' engagement towards the public, in order to minimise the ambiguous feelings expressed by citizens regarding knowledge of and the potential benefits from science and technology. This was achieved through promoting the mass media's engagement towards science and building partnerships between science laboratories and non-scientific stakeholders in journalism.

The program primarily focused on developing the basic infrastructure of a two-way communication between scientists and journalists through six training programs provided to 85 young journalists by scientists. The consortium ensured the involvement of young journalists, while EU funded research laboratories provided the background for the training, the scientific and technical know-how in ongoing EU funded projects.

The workshops were based on common issues and objectives. They were activated and have started a dialogue in order to reach the objectives, and as an effect, the researchers and young journalists have started to listen to and communicate to each other. In order to ensure long term sustainability, the program was developed into a common platform for young journalists being interested in writing about European research, which will continue to be alive after the closure of the project.

Three specific objectives have been achieved within the duration of the project:
(a) Establish an infrastructure and a methodology to support communication and cooperation between scientists and journalists.
(b) Involve participants who will contribute to maximising the impact of the program and ensure maximum benefits for the wider public.
(c) Provide young journalists with appropriate tools to maximise their skills and interest to publish interesting and relevant material about EU research in non-scientific TV channels and in general press, in a way that is understandable for the wider public.

90 young journalists from all over the European Union and Associate Countries, in the age group of 20-30 were selected to participate in the workshops. 85 young journalists from 27 EU Member States and Associate Countries effectively participated in the workshops which have taken place in four EU countries - Italy, Austria, Czech Republic and Hungary.

Two final events, the final conference of MY SCIENCE on 28 May 2010 in Bolzano, Italy drew an audience of 72 participants from 15 countries targeting researchers, journalists and media; the second presentation in Brussels on 10 June 2010, targeted policy makers, officials from the EU Commission, European Parliament and other stakeholders interested in science and communication. This meeting served towards disseminating the project results to the 90 participants from various disciplines.

The main outcome of the project is the training methodology developed, which when utilised in the future with similar/improved workshops will support the growth of a new generation of young journalists who can effectively translate scientific information to common man, and act as a bridge between the two communities.

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