Marc Vanholsbeeck has a PhD in information and communication studies.
At Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Marc teaches research practices in communication studies, argumentation and debate as well as (open) science communication.
Dr. Vanholsbeeck is also the current head of the Department of higher education and scientific research at the Ministry of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation (aka French Community of Belgium).
He is particularly involved in matters that relate to social sciences and humanities (SSH) research policies, research evaluation and Open Science, having chaired the former European Research Area Standing Working Group on Open Science and Innovation between 2018 and 2021.
In this session, I’ll present the training of researchers in science communication as a particularly complex activity and discuss four interconnected challenges that trainers must tackle.
Those challenges relate to
- diversity of objectives inherent in the practice of science communication ;
- ambivalence of the scientist’s ethos ;
- contradictions of the academic career in regard to science communication ;
- impact of (social) media on the public debate.
Together with the audience, I’ll evaluate the extent to which science communication trainers may turn each of these challenges into an opportunity to better integrate science communication into scholars’ set of essential skills.
I’ll argue that this can only happen if trainers duly integrate the complex nature of science communication into the conception of the training sessions, rather than prioritising a single approach —most often based on a science deficit perspective.