SCIENCE AND SOCIETY: Time for a new deal

"We are only able to improve Europe if we are able to ensure the engagement of all Europeans, all our citizens. Europe, to be successful, needs the support of citizens and “citizens will not be convinced with rhetoric and promises only, but only with a concrete set of common achievements” (José Manuel Barroso, State of the Union speech, September 2013).

Scientific evidence has shown that to engage our citizens we need to learn how to improve our communication. There is still a lack of (or “difficult”) communication amongst politicians, policy-makers, citizens, scientists and media. No true dialogue can ever be achieved without a common understanding of the issues at stake.

In line with the title of the first Opinion Paper of the Science and Technology Advisory Council – “Science for an informed, sustainable and inclusive knowledge society” – this edition of the Berlaymont Paper, apart from introducing the work of the Council, looks at the broader science and society relationship."

Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Anne Glover, Chief Scientific Adviser to the President of the European Commission
  • Introduction
  • Aligning science, innovation and society: An integral part of European Research and Innovation policy by Robert-Jan Smits
  • Science for an informed, sustainable and inclusive knowledge society by the Science and Technology Advisory Council
  • “To be responsive to public needs, we should be sensitive to gut feelings, but should not subordinate our policies to them” by Ortwin Renn
  • Citizens for the 21st century by Ana Costa Freitas
  • Annex: Biographies of the STAC members

The President's Science and Technology Advisory Council is an independent and informal group of science and technology experts from academia, business and civil society, covering a broad range of disciplines and uniting expertise from across the European Research Area. Established in January 2013 and chaired by the Chief Scientific Adviser, the task of the Council is to examine areas where research and innovation can contribute to Europe's growth — with a particular focus on benefits and risks of advances in science & technology and how to address and communicate these.


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Editor: Isabelle Ioannides. Assistant: Aurélie Therace

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