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19. November 2014 14:16

ESF Science Policy Briefing wins award for promoting public understanding of the social dimensions of science

The European Association for the Study of Science and Technology (EASST) has awarded the ESF Policy Briefing ‘Science in Society: Caring for our futures in turbulent times' its prestigious Ziman award for “the most innovative cooperation in a venture to promote the public understanding of the social dimensions of science”.   The Briefing is a collaborative endeavour of a prominent group of science and technology studies academics, chaired by Professor Ulrike Felt, with extensive participation of research funders and European policy makers in a series of workshops.   The award was presented to Professor Felt during the Awards ceremony of the EASST biannual conference on 19 September 2014 in Torun, Poland.

Award recipients pictured from left to right: Johan Schot (Freeman award), Ulrike Felt (Ziman award) and Israel Rodriguez-Giralt (Amsterdamska award)

The EASST Council stated:
“This action constructs a broad and original framework for addressing science and society issues. It translates notions of diversity and reflexivity into agendas for policy and practice; articulates notions of relevance and responsibility into a social framework of caring rather than control, and resonates with contemporary themes of crisis, austerity and governance”

John Ziman had a distinguished career as a theoretical physicist and was a key figure in the formation of EASST for which he was President from 1983 – 1986. He was actively involved in a variety of initiatives concerning the social responsibility of science, was an avid promoter of initiatives at the public interface of science and also an eloquent and witty commentator on the popular understanding of science.

EASST is the European Association for the Study of Science and Technology. Established in 1981 it is the organization which represents academics and researchers in the fields of science and technology studies, the social analysis of innovation and related areas of knowledge. It brings together a variety of disciplines and many of its members have qualifications in both natural science/engineering and social sciences.

More information on the ESF Science in Society Project and the Policy Briefing is available on