Importance of Science Communication Highlighted



Islamabad, AUG 26 – Science communication is a neglected area in the developing world and we should look at it as a mainstream profession and discipline just like we look at microbiology, physics, chemistry, and engineering, said Dr. Mahaletchumy Arujanan, while addressing an online webinar on science communication.

She said that Covid-19 taught us a lot of lessons one of which is lack of science literacy among not only in general public but also in policy makers and politicians which was reflected from their statements that did not stand with science.

While talking about the importance of science and technology she asked, is there any country in the world that has developed without strong pillars of science, technology and innovation? She said that the science and technology is the driver of economic development and the general public, politicians, and policy makers need to have a strong science literacy and defined that science literacy means basic knowledge of science to make decisions.

She stressed the development of science culture, so that people like to visit science theater, science museums and science café in their free time and discuss science on dining table. She stressed the need of making science part of culture for a good science communication.

She indicated that the policies, regulations and guidelines which are not based on science can be dangerous and suggested that policies, regulations and funding mechanisms should be based on science.

She urged scientists to become science communicators. There are benefits of science communication. Scientists can influence regulations, raise funding, garner attention, and initiate collaboration with industry by just communicating their research in simple words. Institutional support, commercialization, political support and public acceptance can only be achieved by science communication, she informed.

She described the fundamental techniques and strategies of science communication in her webinar for science communicators and who are aspirant to be.

At the end of her talk she quoted famous physicist, Richard Feynman “The ultimate test of your knowledge is your capacity to convey it to another”.

Prof. Dr. Iqbal Choudhary, Coordinator General, COMSTECH, introduced the speaker and the topic to the audience and said that the lack of science communication has been seen during the COVID-19 pandemic and stressed the need of science communication.

This webinar was organized by COMSTECH, more than 75 researchers attended it online. Dr. Mahaletchumy Arujanan, Executive Director, Malaysian Biotechnology Information Centre, and Global Coordinator, International Service for the Acquisition of Agribiotech Applications delivered this webinar.