If you lead or work for an applied research center or organization, telling the world that it’s a “boundary organization” or that you do “research-to-action” or “research-to-policy” today means nothing.
By which I mean: These terms no longer differentiate the value your group brings to potential partners and to the world.…Read More
The way almost everyone communicates and markets is to start with one of two things:
A. Ourselves (our research, process, product, vision, etc.); or
B. A problem in the world that our audiences or market face (that the audience soon learns our research, process, product or vision etc.…Read More
The science about how to communicate research is eternally promising, tantalizing and…frustrating.
For this science to be helpful to communicators, its researchers need to
- Use study subjects that closely resemble the ones practitioners target;
- Provide findings that are close to shovel-ready; and
- Test whether and which communications strategies and tactics can prompt behaviors that would translate into real world impact.
What’s better at motivating climate change action — analytical information, or a story?
Most science communicators would automatically say “storytelling” — and now a new study out from the journal Climatic Change will only strengthen that reflex.
The paper argues that embedding climate change messages within an actual story is more effective than fact-based arguments at provoking durable “pro-environmental behaviors” in your audience.…Read More
Here’s one of the smartest pieces of communications advice I’ve ever heard:
If you’re given 30 minutes to talk, also prepare for five.
If you’re not the first person on the schedule, you’ll often end up with far less time than promised.…Read More
The point of explainer content isn’t to end conversations. It’s to start them.
I don’t have a lot of patience for critics of the explainer genre who say it’s fundamentally duplicitous — that it pretends to an unattainable objectivity within which it hides bias and suppression of diverse views.…Read More
I argued yesterday that researchers and research-driven organizations are now in the explainer business — providing content that contextualizes what’s happening in the world, so that audiences can understand and respond intelligently to those events and trends.
Explainers are a business because they solve a problem and fill a gap, as Emily Gaudette put it a few months ago for Contently.…Read More
We all agree: Researchers aren’t journalists, and research-driven organizations aren’t in the journalism business — at least as we’ve understood that business for the last century plus.
But let’s also agree that the old model of how research works with journalism — research as a kind of raw material that journalism turns into public attention and then action — is also no longer broadly viable.…Read More
That’s the first question to ask of any metric, any tactic, any strategy.
Weiner borrowed the question from the book of the same name, about a British Olympic rowing coach that asked his mediocre team to ask that question of every single thing they did in training.…Read More