Science communication - Academia to non-academia

Student thesis: Master Thesis and HD Thesis

  • Josephine Wiis
4. term, Psychology, Master (Master Programme)
This paper investigates the phenomenon of science communication from academia to non-academia from a cultural psychological approach complemented by a structural focus drawing on Michel Foucault (Valsiner, 2014)(Foucault, 2002). Through a com-bination of a theoretical elaboration of the phenomenon and an empirical investigation of the academic perspective hereof, the investigation shed light on the complex correla-tion of scientific communication out of academia within the field of psychology. To address the correlation between academia and non-academia in regard to science com-munication, the cultural psychological perspective and the theory of social representa-tions is brought in to elaborate on the transformation of knowledge and how we as individuals make sense of the world (Lawrence & Valsiner, 2003)(Sammut, Andreouli, Gaskell, & Valsiner, 2015). This thesis main concept is communication, which is seen as cultural tool that enable individuals to exchange knowledge and inter-act socially. Here, Positioning theory is added as a cultural tool used within communi-cation to elaborate on the several potential asymmetric and dynamic power positions imbedded in the science communication (Van Langenhove & Harré, 1999). Foucault’s concepts of discourse, governmentality and institutionalization is further added in order to draw out the more hidden structural aspects of the phenomenon under investigation (Foucault, 1975)(Foucault, 1997). As these societal power structures constitute science communication and serve as a macro context for the phenomenon. This theoretical elaboration is complimented by the empirical analysis of the two interviews with the psychological scientists Svend Brinkmann and Jaan Valsiner. This analysis draws on the Thematic Network analysis and applying the thesis theoretical base to the empirical data (Attride-stirling, 2001). Overall this thesis put forward a complex understanding of the phenomenon under investigation. Bringing in the many dynamic aspect con-tained in the correlation of science communication to non-academia. Adding the under-standing of scientific knowledge getting transformed through different filters, and channels mediating the communication, parallel with the many agents drawing on spe-cific discourses which is shaped by societal structures. Along with the many agenda and motives by different agents participating in the correlation which seeks to affect it.
Publication date31 May 2019
Number of pages95
ID: 304773929