Public Communication of Technological Change: Modest and Less Modest Witnesses
When journalists popularize a highly topical new technology, such as the Internet, they situate their popularization within technological expectations; when researchers popularize it, they situate their popularization within both a retrospective and prospective understanding of technological change. Following this, journalists are inclined to appeal to emotionally involved users or pioneers, and researchers are inclined to appeal to responsible citizens. Hence, journalists immodestly dramatize the future by boosting a new technology or turning its risks into threats, while researchers acting as “modest witnesses” pour oil in troubled waters, indicating skepticism about the journalistic approach. Consequently, the technology popularization field is structured in two dimensions: from public appreciation of technology via public engagement to critical understanding of technology in public, and from expectation-based argumentation to research-based argumentation.
Nordicom Review 35 (Special Issue): 111–123.
Andersen, Elisabeth K., and Harald Hornmoen. 2011. “Mediating Science in Norway: Practices and Transformations in Major
Newspapers.” Media Transformations 5: 88–104.
Bader, Renate G. 1990. “How Science News Sections Influence Newspaper Science Coverage—A Case Study.” Journalism
Quarterly 1: 88–96.
Basalla, George. 1988. The Evolution of Technology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Bauer, Martin W. 2012. “Public Attention to Science 1820-2010—A ‘Longue Durée’ Picture.” In The Sciences’ Media Connection - Public Communication and its Repercussions, edited by Simone Rödder, Martina Franzen and Peter Weingart, 35–57. Dordrecht:
Bauer, Martin W. 2015. Atoms, Bytes & Genes—Public Resistance and Techno-scientific Responses. New York: Routledge.
Benford, Robert D., and David A. Snow. 2000. “Framing Processes and Social Movements: An Overview and Assessment.”
Annual Review of Sociology 26 (1): 611–39.
Bloomfield, Brian P., and Bill Doolin. 2012. “Symbolic Communication in Public Protest Over Genetic Modification: Visual Rhetoric,
Symbolic Excess, and Social Mores.” Science Communication 35 (4): 502–527.
Borup, Mads , Nik Brown, Kornelia Konrad, and Harro van Lente. 2006. “The Sociology of Expectations in Science and
Technology.” Technology Analysis & Strategic Management 18 (3–4): 285–298.
Bragesjö, Fredrik, Aant Elzinga, and Dick Kasperowski. 2012. “Continuity or Discontinuity? Scientific Governance in the Pre- History of the 1977 Law of Higher Education and Research in Sweden.” Minerva 50: 65–96.
Brown, Nik, and Mike Michael. 2003. “A Sociology of Expectations: Retrospecting Prospects and Prospecting Retrospects.” Technology Analysis & Strategic Management 15 (1): 3–18.
Brown, Nik, Brian Rappert, and Andrew Webster. 2000. Contested Futures. A Sociology of Prospective Techno-Science. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Bucchi, Massimiano. 1998. Science and the Media. Alternative Routes in Scientific Communication. London: Routledge.
Bucchi, Massimiano, and Brian Trench, eds. 2008. Handbook of public communication of science and technology. Milton Park: Routledge.
Callon, Michel. 1998. “An Essay on Framing and Overflowing: Economic Externalities Revisited by Sociology.” In The Laws of the Market, edited by Michel Callon, 244–269. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.
Carlsen, Benedicte, Ingrid B. Müftüoglu, and Hanne Riese. 2014. “Forskning i media: Forskere om motivasjon og erfaringer fra medieintervjuer.” Norsk medietidsskrift 21 (3): 188–208.
Cheng, Donghong, Michel Claessens, Nicholas R.J. Gascoigne, Public communication of technological change 14
NJSTS vol 4 issue 2 2016
Jenni Metcalfe, Bernard Schiele, and Shunke Shi, eds. 2008. Communicating Science in Social Contexts: New models, new practices. New York: Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Davies, Sarah R. 2014. “Knowing and Loving: Public Engagement beyond Discourse.” Science & Technology Studies 27 (3): 90–110.
Dunwoody, Sharon. 1999. “Scientists, Journalists, and the Meaning of Uncertainty.” In Communicating Uncertainty: Media Coverage of New and Controversial Science, edited by Sharon M. Friedman, Sharon Dunwoody and Carol L. Rogers, 59–80. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Epstein, Steven. 1996. Impure Science—AIDS, Activism, and the Politics of Knowledge. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Fahy, Declan. 2015. The New Celebrity Scientists: Out of the Lab and into the Limelight. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield.
Fenn, Jackie, and Mark Raskino. 2007. Understanding Gartner‘s Hype Cycles. Gartner Inc.
Fleck, Ludwik. 1935/1979. Entstehung und Entwicklung einer wis¬senchaftlichen Tatsache: Einführung in die Lehre wom Denkstil und Denkkollektiv (Eng. tr. Genesis and Development of a Scientific Fact). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Gamson, William A., and Kathryn E. Lasch. 1983. “The Political Culture of Social Welfare Policy.” In Evaluating the Welfare State: Social and Political Perspectives, edited by Shimon E. Spiro and Ephraim Yuchtman-Yaar, 397–415. Paris: Academic Press.
Gamson, William A., and Andre Modigliani. 1987. “The Changing Culture of Affirmative Action.” Research in Political Sociology 3: 137–77.
Gamson, William A., and Andre Modigliani. 1989. “Media Discourse and Public-Opinion on Nuclear-Power. A Constructionist Approach.” American Journal of Sociology, 95(1): 1–37.
Gibbons, Michael. 1999. “Science’s New Social Contract with Society.” Nature 402 (Supp): c81–c84.
Goodell, Roe. 1977. “The Visible Scientists.” The Sciences 17 (1): 6–9.
Green, Sandy E. 2004. “A Rhetorical Theory of Diffusion.” Academy of Management Review 29 (4): 653–669.
Gunter, Barrie, Julian Kinderlerer, and Deryck Beyleveld. 1999. “The Media and Public Understanding of Biotechnology: A Survey of Scientists and Journalists.” Science Communication 20 (4): 373–394.
Haran, Joan, and Jenny Kitzinger. 2009. “Modest Witnessing and Managing the Boundaries between Science and the Media: A Case Study of Breakthrough and Scandal.” Public Understanding of Science 18 (6): 634–652.
Haraway, Donna J. 1997. Modest_Witness@Second_Millenium. FemaleMan©_Meets_OncoMouse? New York: Routledge.
Hesse-Biber, Shalene, and Paul Dupuis. 2000. “Testing Hypotheses on Qualitative Data: The Use of HyperResearch Computer- Assisted Software.” Social Science Computer Review 18 (3): 320–328.
Hetland, Per. 2002. “Unmasking the Net: When Technology Communication Turns to the Public.” Nordicom Review 23 (1–2): 109–124.
Hetland, Per. 2012. “Internet between Utopia and Dystopia: The Narratives of Control.” Nordicom Review 33 (2): 3–15.
Hetland, Per. 2015. “Popularizing the Internet: Traveling Companions Supporting the Good News.” Nordicom Review 36 (2): 157–171.
Hilgartner, Stephen. 1990. “The Dominant View of Popularization: Conceptual Problems, Political Uses.” Social Studies of Science 20 (3): 519–539.
Hilgartner, Stephen. 2000. Science on Stage: Expert Advice as Public Drama. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
Hjarvard, Stig. 2013. The Mediatization of Culture and Society. London: Routledge.
Ihlen, Øyvind, and Mike Nitz. 2008. «Framing Contests in Environmental Disputes: Paying Attention to Media and Cultural Master Frames.» International Journal of Strategic Communication 2 (1): 1–18.
Kalleberg, Ragnvald. (2012). Sociologists as Public Intellectuals and Experts. Journal of Applied Social Science, 6(1), 43–52.
Kuhn, Thomas S. 2012. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Kyvik, Svein. 2005. “Popular Science Publishing and Contributions to Public Discourse among University Faculty.” Science Communication 26 (3): 288–311.
Latour, Bruno. 1987. Science in Action: How to Follow Scientists and Engineers through Society. Milton Keynes: Open University Press.
Leach, Joan. 2009. “Scientific Witness, Testimony, and Mediation.” In Media Witnessing: Testimony in the Age of Mass Communication, edited by Paul Frosh and Amit Pinchevski. London: Palgrave Macmillian.
Lewenstein, Bruce. 1995. “Science and the Media.” In Handbook of Science and Technology Studies, edited by Sheila Jasanoff, Gerald E. Markle, James C. Peterson and Trevor Pinch, 343–359. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Løvhaug, Johannes W. 2011. “Overlæreren i rampelyset: Universitetet i mediesamfunnet 1970–2011.” In Universitetet i Oslo 1811–2011, edited by John P. Collett. Oslo: UNIPUB.
Morgan, Mary S. 2011. “Travelling Facts.” In How Well Do Facts Travel?, edited by Peter Howlett and Mary S. Morgan, 3–39. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
NFR. 2002. Kommunikasjon, IKT og medier (KIM): Programplan. Oslo: The Norwegian Research Council.
NFR. 2003. Samfunnsmessige og kulturelle forutsetninger for IKT (SKIKT): Programstyrets egenevaluering. Oslo: The Norwegian Research Council.
NFR. 2010. Programplan 2005-2014 (Revidert februar 2010): Kjernekompetanse og verdiskaping i IKT - VERDIKT. Oslo: The Norwegian Research Council.
Nohrstedt, Stig A. 2010. “Threat Society and the Media.” In Communicating Risks: Towards the Threat Society?, edited by Stig A. Nohrstedt, 17–51. Gothenburg: Nordicom.
Nowotny, Helga, Peter Scott, and Michael Gibbons. 2001. Re-thinking Science: Knowledge and the Public in an Age of Uncertainty. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Perrault, Sarah T. 2013. Communicating Popular Science: From Deficit to Democracy. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Public communication of technological change 15
Peters, Hans P. 1995. “The Interaction of Journalists and Scientific Experts: Co-operation and Conflict between Two Professional
Cultures.” Media, Culture & Society 17 (1): 31–48.
Peters, Hans P. 2013. “Gap between Science and Media Revisited: Scientists as Public Communicators.” PNAS 110 (Suppl 3):
14102–14109. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1212745110.
Peters, Hans P. 2014. “Scientists as Public Experts.” In Routledge Handbook of Public Communication of Science and
Technology, edited by Massimiano Bucchi and Brian Trench, 70–82. London: Routledge.
Peters, John D. 2001. “Witnessing.” Media, Culture & Society 23 (6): 707–723.
Peters, John D. 2011. “An Afterword: Torchlight Red on Sweaty Faces.” In Media Witnessing: Testimony in the Age of Mass
Communication, edited by Paul Frosh and Amit Pinchevski, 42–48. London: Palgrave Macmillian.
Petersen, Alan, Alison Anderson, Stuart Allan, and Clare Wilkinson. 2009. “Opening the Black Box: Scientists’ Views on the Role
of the News Media in the Nanotechnology Debate.” Public Understanding of Science 18 (5): 512–530.
Pfaffenberger, Bryan. 1992. “Technological Dramas.” Science, Technology & Human Values 17 (3): 282–312.
Pollock, Neil, and Robin Williams. 2010. “The Business of Expectations: How Promissory Organizations Shape Technology and
Innovation.” Social Studies of Science 40 (4): 525–548.
Reed, Rosslyn. 2001. “(Un-)Professional Discourse? Journalists’ and Scientists’ Stories about Science in the Media.” Journalism
2 (3): 279–298.
Rip, Arie. 2006. “Folk Theories of Nanotechnologists.” Science as Culture 15 (4): 349–365.
Rogers, Everett M. 2003. Diffusion of Innovations. New York: Free Press.
Ryghaug, Marianne. 2006. “Some Like it Hot” - Konstruksjon av kunnskap om klimaendringer i norske aviser.” Norsk
Medietidsskrift 13 (3): 197–219.
Rödder, Simone, Martina Franzen, and Peter Weingart, eds. 2012. The Sciences’ Media Connection—Public Communication and its Repercussions. Dordrecht: Springer.
Schiele, Bernard, and Anik Landry. 2012. “The Development of Science Communication Studies in Canada.” In Science Communication in the World: Practices, Theories and Trends, edited by Bernard Schiele, Michel Claessens and Shunke Shi, 33–64. Dordrecht: Springer.
Schäfer, Mike S. 2012. “Taking Stock: A Meta-analysis of Studies on the Media’s Coverage of Science.” Public Understanding of Science 21 (6): 650–663.
Shapin, Steven. 1984. “Pump and Circumstance: Robert Boyle’s Literary Technology.” Social Studies of Science 14: 481–520.
Shapin, Steven, and Simon Schaffer. 1985. Hobbes, Boyle, and the Experimental Life. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Suerdem, Ahmet, Martin W. Bauer, Susan Howard, and Luke Ruby. 2013. “PUS in Turbulent Times II—A Shifting Vocabulary that Brokers Inter-disciplinary Knowledge.” Public Understanding of Science 22 (1): 2–15.
Trench, Brian, and Massimiano Bucchi. 2010. “Science Communication, an Emerging Discipline.” Journal of Science Communication 9 (3): 1–5.
UiO. 2004. Formidling som Teller. Drøftingsnotat om Insentiver for Forskningsformidling. Oslo: University of Oslo.
Väliverronen, Esa. 2001. “From Mediation to Mediatization: The New Politics of Communicating Science and Biotechnology.” In The Politics of Public Issues, edited by Ullamaija Kivikuru and Tarja Savolainen, 157–177. Helsinki: Department of Communication, University of Helsinki.
Wien, Charlotte. 2013. “Formidlere af faglige fakta eller samfunds¬debattører? Om forskernes rolle i nyhedsmedierne.” Nordicom Information 35 (1-2): 21–35.Public communication of technological change 16
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
All content in NJSTS is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. This means that anyone is free to share (copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format) or adapt (remix, transform, and build upon the material) the material as they like, provided they follow two provisions:
a) attribution - give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made.
b) share alike - any remixing, transformation or building upon the material must itself be published under the same license as the original.