Here are the ideas that ASTC participants suggested at the announcement of ASTC's support for a community of practice around public engagement with science at the conference in Baltimore on October 16, 2011

What do institutions want to get out of a PES CoP?
  • Using pubic radio stations at universities to link scientists and the community
  • Formalizing the process of finding the needs of partners from both sides
  • A formalized process for evaluating engagement
  • Meeting with people interested in science policy aspect
  • How to create sustainable ongoing opportunities on traditionally one-off programming
  • Figuring out how a cop can help with staff development w/in institutions to do PES
  • Help institutions find out how to improve programs by looking across the field
  • Share an effectiveness of programs across the field
  • How to infuse and imbed PED in exhibitions
  • How to layer PES into the work we’re already doing
  • Useful case histories of successful scientists talking about how PES helps them in their work
  • Scientists who are prepared to reach out to their peers
  • Expand how teachers use science cafes etc
  • See science communication training for scientists to engage with public and share practices
  • Safe space to share things that didn’t work
  • Community needs mediation training about what to do when conversations get heated
  • Mediation training internally (PD)
  • How to lead and set-up a controversial issue
  • Successful business models that make this work for science centers
  • Inviting all of community to attend program, vote electronically – how can that model be used in museums and outside of museum communities (Met Council)
  • Support for management at all levels of the organization so that programs can be more effective
  • How to ensure that institutions’ public trust is still kept high
  • How to engage and incorporate community voices
  • Scientists who are interested in doing research with visitors – general discussion and policy approach
  • Opportunities to come together and see successes onsite – in person opportunities to grow together
  • Figuring out what science our audiences are interested in
  • Non-scientists with science-related skills – forum for them to engage the public
  • Training or sharing of success stories: how can we sell scientists on being involved
  • Moving from understanding to engagement, how do we communicate/prepare funders for this shift?

How can ASTC support the CoP as it evolves?
  • Having live look-ins with technology, including publics, scientists – capturing programs through live reporting
  • More deliberate and active invitations to science and research community to conference – presentations of papers, networking opportunities
  • Use the conference (Sat. morning in plenary), use break-out groups to decide on action groups; iterative process each year
  • Look at other models like Public Agenda, National Issues forum, UCS
  • Work with scientific funding agencies to include engagement in broader impacts
  • Organizational clearinghouse of what’s going on in the field by region, location open to the ISE field and the scientific community to increase participation
  • Organize regional conferences
  • Create certification program for grad students in public communication of science
  • Award mechanism for scientists or organizations that do this well
  • Effective models for engaging children
  • Take the case studies from PES workshop and create searchable, expandable database including what didn’t work. Searchable on dimensions of PES, modeled on Exhibit Files with online forum component
  • Framework/ standards for reporting and setting goals so that data can be collected in a meaningful way
  • Do our communities value the public engagement we’re providing? Need a recent study showing support.
  • Support programs like webcasts from one science centers to others to see national speakers
  • Matching mechanism for interested scientists and organizations
  • Provide more opportunities for peer-reviewed publication; field is currently limited
  • Look at opportunities for fellowships for scientists in museum – career development opportunities for scientists
  • Annotated bibliography of research studies/evaluation reports from successful programs as a tool for grant writing
  • Co-sponsoring sessions at scientific meetings
  • Partnering with community-based science organizations and sharing with ASTC online
  • Representatives from ASTC at community organization meetings – initiatives should start out inclusive (civic organizations? Local government?)