The Canberra branch of the ASC held a joint event (‘turning science into action’) last week with Interpretation Australia and the Australasia-Pacific Extension Network. We had a great discussion about the similarities (many) and differences (some interesting ones) between science communication, interpretation and extension/technology transfer.
The main differences seemed to be the groups of people that we target with our communication and the types of messages we aim to get across. Extension focuses mainly on those involved in the agricultural industries, while interpretation has a significant focus on natural resource management and cultural heritage. All three disciplines were on the ‘change behaviour or attitudes’ spectrum, but it seemed from the discussion that extension and technology transfer are at the ‘change behaviour’ end, while interpretation and science communication move between the ‘change attitude’ end and somewhere in the middle, depending on circumstances.
Big thanks to ASC (national) President Jesse Shore who came down from Sydney to represent the ASC on the panel. Jesse is keen to create links with organisations that have cross-over with the ASC, so this was a good opportunity to think about future collaboration with APEN and IA. The Canberra branch of the ASC is hoping to run more joint events in the future, and we’d encourage other ASC branches to do the same as there’s a lot we can learn from one another!
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