Making your research accessible

New IDS Bulletin: New roles for communication in development?

By 1 October 2012

The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) have recently published a new Bulletin entitled New Roles for Communication in Development? (Lewin, T. Harvey, B., and Page, S. IDS, 2012).

Blane Harvey: New IDS Bulletin ‘New Roles for Communication in Development?’ from Research to Action on Vimeo.

In this short video, captured back in March this year at a roundtable on ‘Putting Communication for Development Research into Use’ hosted by IDS, one of the authors, Blane Harvey, talks about this new publication. Harvey, a Research Fellow in the Climate Change team at IDS, describes how the upcoming Bulletin focuses on three key areas where there are currently big shifts in research communication:

  1. How the political economy of knowledge is changing and how the value of research is shifting and our understanding ‘value for money’ in terms of funding research. This is having a big impact on what we try to communicate and to whom.
  2. The increasing importance of new networks and partnerships and the knowledge transferring between the North and South. New technologies are allowing the creation of new networks for knowledge sharing to happen but they are also introducing gaps, where getting the right people involved can become a challenge.
  3. New and emerging technologies. These get a lot of press, but there needs to be caution in thinking that emerging technologies can drive all change. They can exclude as well as include audiences and this needs further exploration.

The publication asks some pertinent questions such as; What does validity mean in an environment where bloggers and journalists are often viewed as more credible, useful or accessible sources than researchers? How are the roles of researchers and research communicators changing?

It ‘aims to explore these interesting changes by drawing on the experiences of practitioners, theorists and community intermediaries from a wide range of disciplines’.

For more information, visit the IDS site.

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