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Communicating Scientific Breakthrough

The first day of the World Communication Forum in Davos “Communication on Top”, opened with a heated debate about “Privacy vs Publicity in the era of transparency”, and continued with the prolific and international panel - “Communicating scientific breakthrough”. The panel included 8 speakers, from France, Japan, Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, Canada and Switzerland, who shared the experience of scientific/business/communication research institutes and discussed the main problems of the industry. The moderator - James Gillies, Head of Communications at CERN, opened the panel discussion inviting Stanislav Naumov - representative of the sponsors from Skolkovo, who spoke on communicating the idea of innovations in a country where it is strongly associated with governmental affairs, and closed with the presentation of Evgeny Kuznetsov, RVC, who identified main issues in the communications industry in Russia. During the discussion, Michel Claessens, ITER, shared the experience of the French nuclear fusion project which, as he put it, is "neither scientific nor technology", besides it costs a lot, so it must be communicated properly and this brings the necessity of so-called media science, which is opposed to journalism in the way of dealing with scientific information. Hiromi Yokoyama, Japanese School of Science, has given an inside perspective of the earthquake that happened on March 11, 2011 and how the new science media history has been divided into "before" and "after 3.11", when people lost trust in science and it was a real challenge to provide fast and accurate information.
Annie Gravier, Nettie Buitelaar and Maria Satherstrom talked about the experiences of building and developing science and technology business parks in Europe and Canada, and drew conclusions about the necessity of good communication, mutual understanding and synergy between people from science and specialists in public relations and journalism. "The rule is - surprise me and I'll remember you" advised Mrs. Gravier. Mr. Hans Kunz from Switzerland spoke about transparency and ethics in the scientific industry, based on his experience in developing a science park in Hong-Kong. James Gillies, summed up the need for awareness of the importance of competent communication innovations to attract investment and promote science. Maria Satherstrom spoke on the necessity to arrange networking between scientists and journalists, and gave her conclusion: "If no one understands what you're doing, then what good is it?"

The goal of the Forum is to unite trend-makers and influencers from the communications elite and to provide a platform for discussion on the future development of communications and their role in business, society, and politics, to provoke in-depth analysis of the form and content of interaction between business professionals, the media, and society, on the one hand, and the state, on the other. What we need is a global network for distributing best practices in crisis, change or reputation management, as well as useful strategies in investor relations, employee motivation, government lobbying, etc. Equally necessary is to foresee the upcoming communication trends and secure a successful method for analyzing problems, finding solutions and offering best tools to serve top managers in their decision-making or daily professional tasks and, through the exchange of ideas and opinions, help them improve their own corporate and social efficiency.

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