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Sciencewise undertakes research and analysis into key issues for the advancement of good practice in public dialogue. By building knowledge and understanding and by creating space for further discussion around these issues, Sciencewise is leading thinking on how to embed meaningful public dialogue into policymaking on science and technology.


Valuing dialogue: economic benefits and social impacts

Robin Clarke, 2015

A working paper looking at the question of ‘valuing dialogue’ from an economic and social impacts perspective. Taking into consideration the cost of not doing dialogue and the role of public dialogue in identifying unquantifiable social impacts.

International TL2

Public dialogue in science and technology: an international overview

Sonia Bussu, 2015

This policy paper carries out an international review of public engagement in science and technology.

Public on Regulation2

The public’s voice on regulation

Sonia Bussu, 2015

This paper explores how public participation can be applied to the current regulatory framework in order to improve regulatory outcomes and increase public legitimacy.


Data policy and the public: shaping a deeper conversation

Josephine Suherman-Bailey, 2015

The paper aims to support policy makers on how to structure their thinking on the issues, scopes a range of possible questions that could be explored and clarifies the value that public dialogue on data may bring.

Colourful stick pple

The best of Sciencewise reflections on public dialogue

Sonia Bussu, Houda Davis and Amy Pollard, 2014

This paper provides an overview of, and key lessons from Sciencewise's thought leadership and research on public dialogue, pulling out the key themes and most valuable insights that have been explored in the programme's work to date.


Changing hats: how deliberation impacts citizens

Tim Hughes and Amy Pollard, 2014

This paper examines the evidence of how being part of a deliberative dialogue affects participants, and it considers what this means for Sciencewise and others engaged in dialogue processes.

Merits of dialogue

Convincing the public of the merits of dialogue: a hard sell?

Dr Richard Watermeyer and Dr Gene Rowe, 2014

This paper consists of a series of critical reflections, intended to stimulate and enrich discussion concerning the efficacy of public dialogue as a mechanism of democratic science governance.

Public Futures 2

Public futures: using public dialogue to develop policy options on emerging, cross-cutting issues

Sonia Bussu, 2014

This paper examines the challenges and value of public engagement on key emerging, cross-cutting issues in policy related to science and technology.


Responsive research: putting the innovative back into agendas for innovation

Sujatha Raman, 2014

This paper explores why the idea of responsive research is important, what it means, and the conditions required to put it into practice.

Social Media

Social media-based public dialogue: potential, theory and practice

Dr Eric Jensen, 2014

This paper explores the possibility of using existing forms of virtual assembly and discourse (i.e. social media) to either supplement or replace the face-to-face public dialogue exercises currently being conducted for UK government departments with support from Sciencewise.

Whitehall sign 2

Dialogue for governance and regulation: engaging citizens for the long-term

Ingrid Prikken and Simon Burall, 2013

This paper explores the value of involving citizens on an on-going basis in the policy-making process.

Experts Publics and open policy

Experts, publics and open policy-making: Opening the windows and doors of Whitehall

Simon Burall, Tim Hughes and Jack Stilgoe, 2013

This paper explores a range of questions related to the Government’s moves to open up policy-making, and examines the potential for, and barriers to, more public voice within policy-making.

goldfish bowl

In the goldfish bowl: science and technology policy dialogues in a digital world

Susie Latta, Charlotte Mulcare & Anthony Zacharz,

This paper explores how public opinion is increasingly driven by information obtained through digital means and how policy makers are shifting the bulk of engagement exercises and public opinion-gathering online.


Mapping the new terrain: public dialogue on science and technology

Simon Burall and Tim Hughes, 2013

This anthology explores how a range of changes are affecting the relationship between Government, science and society.

Public cropped

Which publics? When?

Alison Mohr, Sujatha Raman, Beverley Gibbs, 2013

This paper explores the policy potential of involving different publics (rather than a single, homogenous ‘public’) in dialogue around science and technology.

Revisiting Past Participants

Revisiting past participants

Tim Hughes and Diane Warburton, 2012

The paper explores the results of a survey when past participants in dialogue were re-contacted after some years, to consider the affect that participating in dialogue has on members of the public.


Departmental dialogue index

Lindsey Colbourne, 2010

This paper describes a diagnostic toolkit, the Departmental Dialogue Index (DDI), to support people within organisations who are interested in improving their organisation’s use of dialogue and engagement.


Ethical dimensions in Sciencewise

Daniel Start, 2010

This review examines public attitudes to ethical and trust issues from over a dozen Sciencewise public dialogues on controversial and emerging science and technology policy areas.

Evidence Counts

Evidence counts: understanding the value of public dialogue

Diane Warbuton, 2010

This paper reports the findings of a short piece of research investigating the costs and benefits of public dialogue and how these can be assessed.

Sustainable Particpation

Sustainable participation?

Dr Jason Chilvers, 2010

This report builds on one of the first ever studies of public participation experts, their networks, roles and relations, to present a broader analysis of the UK public dialogue field as a whole.

Use of Experts

The use of experts in public dialogue

Suzannah Landsdell, 2010

This research offers guidance on how to make the best use of ‘expert’ advice in public dialogue and within the wider policy-making process.

Widening Involvement

Widening public involvement in dialogue

Pippa Hyam, 2010

This research explores widening the involvement of the public in dialogue activities and provides guidance to policy makers on when it is appropriate to involve larger numbers of people in dialogue exercises.

Citizen Involvement

Enabling and sustaining citizen involvement

Diane Beddoes, 2009

This paper looks at enabling and sustaining citizen involvement after a project has ended, which is a new area of interest for both commissioners and practitioners of public dialogue.

The Road Ahead2

The road ahead

Various authors, 2009

This collection of essays aims to provide policy makers and dialogue deliverers with insights into how dialogue could be used in the future to strengthen the links between science and society.

Work with media

Working with the media

Melanie Smallman, 2009

This research explores whether we can be more effective in working with journalists, as part of efforts to publicise engagement with a wider audience.