Melissa Bublitz, Sara Steffes Hansen, Kristine Nicolini, and Maria Novotny
The faculty at UW Oshkosh have research training and expertise within a specific discipline. One challenge they face is how to communicate their knowledge and research to audiences beyond academia to create understanding and inspire action. Faculty can communicate their research to key stakeholders with the power to put that knowledge into action: Citizens who vote, media who publicize issues, advocacy groups working as changemakers, and policymakers in government with the power to influence change. How can we be more effective and persuasive when communicating our research?
This one-day workshop is designed to help faculty develop skills critical to communicating science and research to a wide array of audiences. Key topics include: branding yourself as an expert, writing to explain and persuade, communicating your data, and media relations. The goal is to inform and provide opportunities for hands-on learning, and dialog with local media to accomplish mutual goals. We plan to survey participants in advance to guide the development of the presentations and learning activities to maximize the impact of this workshop. Specific learning goals and workshop session outcomes follow. Attendees will be asked to bring along research they would like to make more visible to the public.
• Goal: Understand the basics of branding
• Outcome 1: Write a one sentence positioning sentence: Who are you as a researcher
• Goal: Understand the different writing styles effective in reaching public audiences
• Outcome 2: Translate a key piece of research information for a specific audience
• Goal: Understand how to use data strategically to communicate with an audience
• Outcome 3: Brainstorm new ways to communicate their data visually and verbally
• Goal: Understand how to leverage different social media platforms to engage audiences
• Outcome 4: Create audience-targeted messaging and influencer plan to engage citizens
• Goal: Develop an understanding of media communication goals
• Outcome 5: Identify a communication goal and develop a strategy to engage the media