Journal of STEM Outreach
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As scientific knowledge grows and the planet’s human population makes unprecedented changes, decision-making places more and more demands on the everyday democratic participant. Yet efforts to help the public acquire and make use of evidence-based information fall short. We present preliminary comparisons of three participatory design models of public engagement with science designed to encourage community action rather than just raise awareness in participants on local public health issues impacted by climate change. We collected survey data at two in-person community-based participatory dialogues and a museum exhibit and presented but received no surveys from televised versions of the participatory dialogues. Results indicated that behavior change was indeed salient to participants. Actions participants plan to take included sharing what they learned, contacting legislators, and direct conservation efforts. Future research should study whether participants undertake planned actions and do so in groups rather than as individuals.
Stofer, K. A., Lundgren, L., Dunckel, B. A., Krieger, J., James, V., & Lange, M. (2019). Public Engagement on Climate and Health in Museums and Participatory Dialogues may Foster Behavior Change. Journal of STEM Outreach 2(1). doi: 10.15695/jstem/v2i1.10